Signs have been pointing at a strong demand for a return to live events by fans as 2021 has progressed, and now Garth Brooks has put a bit of an exclamation point on them. The singer reportedly broke Ticketmaster’s record for rapid sellouts, with more than 50,000 tickets sold for a July show at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah in just 30 minutes.
“YOU SHOWED UP!,” the singer posted on social media Thursday after the rapid sell-through. “#GARTHinSALTLAKE is Ticketmaster’s fastest stadium sell out in US History! 50,000 tickets in less than 30 minutes! Touring is BACK. Utah, Idaho, this is going to be the time I’VE been waiting for. Way to go Ticketmaster! Counting the days to see U-tah! love, G”
Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino even referenced the sale during a conference call following the release of his company’s earnings report Thursday. “Garth Brooks just this morning broke every Ticketmaster record,” he told reporters on the call, as part of a discussion of the strong demand being shown for live events as restrictions on attendance are rolled back across the country.
Brooks’ performance at Rice-Eccles, which is home to the University of Utah’s football team and seats 45,807 for sporting events (the remaining space is field seating for the in-the-round setup Brooks prefers), will be the first concert at the venue in over a decade. It will be his second performance in 2021 if scheduling holds up – with his tour set to resume on July 10 with a sold out show at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. Other dates for 2021 include performances at Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming on July 23, Cincinnati’s Paul Brown Stadium on September 18, and Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium on September 25.
“I was waiting for music to come back live,” Brooks told the hosts during an appearance on Good Day Utah this week. “We’ve all been kind of sitting and people go, ‘What’s it gonna be like to play again? For me, it’s like, I’m a fan – what’s it gonna be like to be in a stadium again? you know, with people, and listen to them sing.”
“I’ve picked the right place to come back,” he added. “Because this is a place where people respect each other and love one another. So there’ll be people with masks, without masks. We’re gonna follow all the rules, enforce whatever it is as those rules change, hopefully, as we come out of this pandemic. I think we picked the right place to get started again and cannot wait to get there.”
Ticket purchasers were required to assume the potential risk of contracting COVID-19 while attending the concert, which will take place on July 17. Utah’s mandate for the wearing of face masks expired on April 10.