The Canadian indie-pop group Tegan and Sara were upset with tickets to their show in San Francisco going to resellers and released tickets to fans who showed up at the door.
The duo performed at the Sydney Goldstein Theater in San Francisco on Tuesday. Ahead of the show, they released the following statement, noting that they would release tickets on a first-come, first-served basis that night:
“It has come to our attention that significant numbers of tickets to our show tonight in San Francisco were unethically gobbled up by secondary ticketing platforms during our tour on sale in July. While the show tonight is technically sold out, many of these tickets are now being flooded back into the market for re-sale. Because there is little time to sell and we never ask our fans to go to secondary sites, this will likely result in empty seats tonight in the Sydney Goldstein Theater.
Our goal is to ensure that our real fans are in each and every seat, and to prevent secondary platforms from hurting our show. As an experiment, tonight in San Francisco we will be offering rush seating for all open seats, at approximately 8:15 p.m. This means that we will allow any empty seats to be available on a “first come first serve” basis in return for a “pay what you can” cash donation at the door to The Tegan and Sara Foundation, which works to support LGBTQ+ girls and women. After analyzing the secondary sites, we estimate we may have over 200 seats to fill at the last minute tonight. We would ask you to line up at the venue in the evening for the chance to be admitted into the show at 8:15 p.m., but note we can’t guarantee seat availability.”
Most fans were grateful that the duo were offering more tickets, but in the past, condemning the secondary market has proved to be problematic. Just last month, The Black Keys made headlines after their show at The Wiltern left hundreds of fans unable to enter the venue due to “nontransferable tickets.” While fans had purchased tickets on the secondary market, the venue, artist site, or primary ticket site did not state anywhere that there was a nontransferable ticket rule ahead of the gig. Additionally, Live Nation has been in hot water for passing tickets to Metallica’s WorldWired tour through resale markets.
At this time, it’s unknown if Tegan and Sara will continue doing this throughout the rest of their tour. They noted that they “will be continuing to work on this frustrating problem this week” and keep fans in the loop about rush seating and ticket availability during upcoming shows. Currently, they are performing in support of their ninth album, Hey, I’m Just Like You, which consists of songs the twins wrote as teenagers. Each show on the tour is an intimate, acoustic set offering home videos and quotes from their memoir of the same name.