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Live and Crisis: CTS Productions

We continue our tribute, this time hosting CTS Productions.

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Anna Katsas, from CTS Productions, is the second company representative who will answer  mixgrill's  questions giving her own opinion about the concerts and Festivals to be held this year in our country in times of economic crisis.

- Concerts and crisis. People have definitely been affected by the economic crisis in their daily expenses. Have you adjusted your goals in this new situation, or is there no variation in your planning?

One of the characteristics of the CTS Productions is that the founding members are musicians and group members themselves so we consider ourselves as part of the crowd, who was, is and will be people who love music concerts and support them in whatever way they can. Our privileged position, if you want, gives us reason to changing things in the field of musical entertainment. Our primary goal from the beginning until today is to maintain the lowest possible prices with the highest quality for our services. The various tax increases in the new economic situation they weigh on us and in no way the public. We continue to have the same or lower prices wherever and whenever possible. In consideration of an unprecedented economic crisis for Greece our immediate plans include lobbying, in any way we can, other parts who shape the final price of the ticket in order to adapt themselves in the new economic realities.

- Do you think that there will be less summer concerts from now on? Or will smaller names with lower financial requirements be preferred?

The good news is that companies in that field are increased significantly in recent times to thereby increasing the frequency and quality of the concerts. It is also positive and it is increasing healthy competition and the abolition of monopolies, where according to the principles of marketing benefit the consumer. If you ask me personally, the "smaller names" - that is the smaller names in popularity - is not necessarily less good in quality than the "big names". These conditions are shaped by both a good and bad marketing system and a "large" or "small" music industry. So answering your question, I think the "small names" with the lowest economic demands will not only not be preferred but will also be rejected, due to the high risk involved. I believe that safer moves will take place at a high cost but still with a lower risk. Worrying is the fact that nothing has been announced yet regarding the summer festivals like the Synch and Eject that this time last year they had already been announced!
As far as concert events of "smaller" names I do not think that there will be significant changes on the ground because they are targeted at specific audience who faithfully follow.

- Will the major Festivals bear it or will they "diminish", having fewer names on the line-up?

I do not know if they would "diminish" even more, and I say even more after making the comparison with foreign festivals that have ten bands of the size of our headlines plus one hundred other "smaller" bands.  I can say with confidence that the choice line-up will be somewhat more secure and proven right! The "summer concert audience" of thousands of people, who clearly does not compare in size to the "winter" will continue to go to major festivals taking place during the summer months in our country.

- Musicians "lose" some money because of music piracy and resort to more live performances to cover their expenses and of course to reap more profits. Do you think they'll adjust their wages according to the new situation imposed by the economic crisis or not?

The truth is that musicians are always earning more from sales of their albums than their live performances. Probably
voluntarily change will not happen! Perhaps only in very rare cases of "senior" groups-guarantee. Whether we are talking about names of huge popularity or not, booking agencies are businesses where of course the purpose of business is the highest possible profit. They will not give themselves lower tariff, they would simply prefer to go there where they are offered more money even if this precludes their appearance in some countries. As long as there is unfair competition, the one who "wins" is the one who offers more, I hope not at the expense of the public.

- Is there a behavioral change of concert sponsors and especially from the government (public grants for example)?

The sponsors of the concerts are more reluctant than a year ago. They see their income reduced and are reluctant to make such investments, even when they know that in such economic times is the best time to be promoted. I do not know personally if it happens in public, government subsidies, but as I mentioned in a previous answer, Synch which is held under the courtesy of the Municipality of Athens has not yet been announced. Regarding the grants in foreign states  (Norway, Germany etc) has not been observed so far behavioral change.

- Do you think that closing a big name for a concert several months before and the advance sales of tickets long time before the concert would help the situation?

Surely such a closing concert several months before, helps the situation and a representative example is the concert of U2 announced by August 2009 and is about to be sold out (if not already so). When you give a very long pre-sale tickets in people it is more likely to have little "break" in finances at some point or to raise money to buy a ticket.

- How do you see your counterparts abroad dealing with the new situation?

Abroad there is a greater demand and greater supply. There are many more organizers and concert halls per square kilometer than in our country. In most foreign countries, they consider fun going out being to a much greater extent the lives and not coffee, drink or bouzouki. Hence its treatment is different. I have absolutely no knowledge of what is out there but I assume that the offer was more than the demand even before the economic crisis. I assume that new facts will not affect the events that are based predominantly on sponsorships from large industry. This concerns the great outdoors, if you want, festivals and not sized or larger events indoors. Most big
alternative festivals I think they make some "cuts" or other agreements.

- Due to higher costs (transport etc) for a show for a big name in Greece, compared with that of a Central European country, do you believe it would help to have a cooperation between companies organizing concerts in our neighboring countries (Italy, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey), so that the appearance of the big names becomes a "package deal" for all these countries or are you already doing this?

Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to raise this issue to inform people who may still have not heard or have not thought about why the tickets in our country are more expensive compared to other European countries. The tour of a band in central Europe is exclusively on the road and not on air. These countries have relatively small distances between them, which means very low transport costs and policy venues are completely different. Here we take the cost of air to and from Greece, mostly because there is no other way, and the high cost of rental of space and sound equipment. The Balkan countries are not of particular interest because of their economic situation and inflation and thus it's rare for a non-giant group to  "descend" to drive here because they simply do not benefit. There, the fundamentals are different from all sides. I do not rule out attempts to work with those companies in Greece that had either good or bad luck.
At CTS we have started cooperation with organizers in neighboring countries always trying for the best.

Tomorrow will be published on the responses sent to us by Andrew Mitrelis the Manifest.