Dutch Focus Index Page

Welcome to Pollstar’s inaugural Dutch Focus. This spotlight on the Netherlands, one of the most important nodes for any international tour visiting Europe, ran in our last issue of 2023. Here you’ll find the main stories from the magazine, as well as individual Q&As with some of the country’s most experience live entertainment professionals.

At this point in time, you may be sick of reading any more superlatives describing how well this business has been doing since the great return of 2022. If so, you’ll be disappointed to hear that this Dutch Focus continues along those exact same lines. After all, why should the live entertainment avalanche that swept over the world in 2023 stop here.

Main Story:

High Stakes In Lowlands: The Dutch Business Is Firing On All Cylinders

04 Lowlands BartHeemskerk
What this business is all about: sending the crowd into a rapture, like here at Lowlands Festival 2018. (Photo by Bart Heemskerk)


‘Making Progress Without Forgetting Where We Come From’: Q’s With Pinkpop’s Niek Murray

Pollstar reached out to festival manager Niek Murray to get the perspective of one of the Netherland’s most iconic festivals, Pinkpop. The conversation touched on the legacy left by Pinkpop founder Jan Smeets, the economic reality of working in the Dutch live biz in 2024, and much more.

Niek by Cynthia CROPPED

‘The Tickets Are Flying Out’: Q’s With Kim Bloem, MD & Head Promoter, Mojo Concerts

For this year’s Dutch Focus, Pollstar reached out to Kim Bloem, one of the managing directors and head promoter at Mojo Concerts, the Netherland’s biggest promoter, to get a sense of the state of business in the country.

While 2024 will not experience the same amount of stadium shows, but it’s already proving hard to get arena, theater, or club avails during the busy periods. There’s potential to break new acts faster than ever before, and Mojo’s festival business is doing great, as well, according to the veteran promoter, who also shared a funny anecdote from her most recent Diana Ross show.

‘Happy To Be On Full Speed Again’: Q’s With Greenhouse Talent’s Wouter de Wilde

Greenhouse Talent has had a monumental 2023, as head promoter and COO Wouter de Wilde told Pollstar. He expects more growth for the business in 2024. The company’s last announcement of 2023 unveiled a stellar lineup for Gent Jazz, including Diana Krall, Jamie Cullum, Patrick Bruel, AIR, and more. But that’s not all, as de Wilde unveiled.

Luke Combs @ C2C Country to Country 2020 in AFAS Live
Louise Smit Pieter Smit Trucking Nightliner

‘Maintaining The Flexibility That Is Required In The Events Industry’: Q’s With Louise Smit of Pieter Smit Trucking & Nightliner

According to Louise Smit, board member at Pieter Smit Trucking and Nightliner, and a 2023 Pollstar and VenuesNow Impact International honoree, the Dutch biz is running smoothly again, notwithstanding the occasional hiccup, which is simply part of the deal of working in live.

‘We Like To Think With The Client’: Q’s With Stanley Jilesen Of Dutch Barrier Services

Dutch Barrier Services may have only officially launched 1.5 years ago, but combines some 50 years of production experience. The business launched with a new barrier system, which it describes as “an absolute game-changer for events and venues across the world.”

The company provides most major events in the Netherlands with its barriers, as well as many major events across Europe. Pollstar reached out to senior account manager Stanley Jilesen to talk shop.


ESNS Special:

35 Years Of Breaking Borders In Europe: A Chat With ESNS Head Of Program Robert Meijerink

“The world has changed,” said Robert Meijerink, “and, looking at the music sector, I think it’s fair to say that there are challenges attached to this change: pressure on people, on organizations, on businesses. It’s something we need to not only understand, but embrace, and try to find a way to deal with the pressure together.”

What better place to do so than at Eurosonic Noorderslag in Groningen, Netherlands?


Ruud Berends Honored For Lifetime Achievement

Ruud Berends, the European networking mastermind, who has shaped many of the UK’s and Europes most influential music conferences, will be honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 13th European Festival Awards this month.

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