The Red Rocks Amphitheater was by far the busiest concert venue in the world last year, according to Billboard Magazine. But 2021 was just a stone’s throw from what’s happening under the stars in Morrison right now.
Red Rocks hosted 233 ticketed events in 2021, including 177 concerts, 36 movies and 20 physical activities, attracting a record 1.32 million people. “And we’re about to break that record,” said Ginger White Brunetti, executive director of Denver Arts & Venues, which manages the iconic amphitheater.
Rather “jump this disc out of the water”. The venue, which generated a record $48 million in revenue for the city last year, is on track to surpass $54.2 million in 2022, which would mean around 1.47 million visitors .
Two reasons: more events, fewer viruses.
Last year, Red Rocks was only able to open at full capacity on June 20 (and yet it still eclipsed its season high of around 250,000 people). This year it was fully opened on April 1. For the first time in history, Red Rocks isn’t taking a single night off between June 1 and October 31 — and by then it’ll likely be booked until November 12. when construction begins on a rebuild of that super-pretty, super-lung elevated walkway south of the stage.
Apparently we’ve all been through things, and people want to get out after two very strange summers. But things will really get back to normal on Monday, when the Film on the Rocks season kicks off with Thor: Ragnarok, following concerts by Devan Blake Jones and N3ptune.
So far from the sorry summer of 2020, when Red Rocks was limited to a handful of performances with a maximum capacity of 250. But if early numbers are any indicator, “live music is well on its way to recovery, and we are happy to see people coming for gigs and enjoying all that Red Rocks has to offer at what feels like record breaking pace,” White Brunetti said.
The only thing that could crash this party? Well, you already know the answer to this question.
“Everyone is cautiously optimistic,” said Brian Kitts, communications director for Arts & Venues. “We have all just experienced something that no one expected in our lifetime. I think we’re always going to be looking over our shoulder to see if another dangerous variant is coming, or something else that’s going to mess up our lives in some way. But I can tell you: we will never again take for granted the simple joy of being able to hang out with friends at a concert.