There will be a slate of familiar acts at the Pavilion.
By JOHN PATRICK GATTA
PITTSBURGH -- If an emphasis toward the classic and popular artists of the past balanced by a slate of artists that are riding the wave of recent success makes for a good summer concert season, then you'll find reason to celebrate at Post-Gazette Pavilion and the Amphitheatre at Station Square.
At least, as it was pointed out during a press conference this week, concert fans should find something to satisfy them due to the diverse lineup of artists and musical styles scheduled at both venues.
Rich Engler, president and CEO of Clear Channel Entertainment in Pittsburgh, opened the proceedings with a statement on the rebirth of the concert industry.
"We are very pleased to see on a national level that the trend to see live entertainment is returning since the tragedy of 9-11. We have already seen increased attendance at a lot of our winter and spring events, and we think this summer will continue that trend. Our theme for this year is "music is your passion, feel it live," he said.
Familiar lineup: Concertgoers who find comfort in revisiting familiar faces and sounds should be pleased by much of the upcoming schedule at the pavilion. Of course, with the state of the music industry, there are fewer and fewer acts that can fill up a venue that size.
The lineup at the Amphitheatre at Station Square features younger artists who are reaping the benefits of hard work, radio airplay and CD sales.
Representatives from Clear Channel Entertainment, which owns and operates both venues, stated that additional concerts and events will be announced once the dates are firmed up. For example, how could it be summer without the Allman Brothers playing at Post-Gazette Pavilion?
Double-bills: Two double-bills for vastly different audiences were mentioned, but since the final details are not completed, they were not given specific dates -- Alanis Morissette with special guest Ryan Adams in what should be a pavilion-only show and Lynyrd Skynyrd with Kid Rock.
Post-Gazette Pavilion hopes that this year's slate of concerts will continue its streak over the past nine seasons of drawing over half a million fans. Television monitors have been placed at several concession areas so concertgoers can see the show while waiting in line for food or drinks. The designated-driver program will be in place once again -- you sign up as you enter the grounds and receive nonalcoholic-beverage coupons.
Expansion: The Station Square area is going through a $70 million expansion project. With the addition of a Hard Rock Caf & eacute; and other restaurants and nightspots, the need for more parking has been addressed with 400 spots added in the area. Also, on event nights the Amphitheatre will provide free shuttle service from the lots near the warehouse area and the incline.
Seating improved: The seating areas at the Amphitheatre have been improved by providing greater room between rows. Then, there are the new premium seats, which offer comfier chairs situated closer to the stage.
Beginning April 15, concertgoers may purchase a limited number of Amphitheatre passes at Station Square Concert License. The photo-laminated pass gets fans into every event at the Amphitheatre, including sold out shows. To receive a ticket, it must be presented at the box office the night of the event. The cost is $99, is nontransferable and only available at the Amphitheatre box office.