As Research Chair of the Center Stage Committee of UPB, my responsibilities range from researching artists and ticket prices to helping book opening bands. Dealing with finding openers depends on the headlining artist’s preferences. Some artists, like B.o.B., are touring with their own openers, so Center Stage doesn’t have to worry about finding one. Others, like Sara Bareilles, have requested not to have an opener at all. We did, however, have to work on booking an opener for Cartel, our first act in the Wilson Concert Series. Here’s how the process of choosing an opening band generally works:
UPB is contacted by a variety of different bands who would like the chance to open at a concert. I compile a list of these bands that fit with the artist’s genre and bring them to a Center Stage meeting. Then, as a committee, we listen to the bands and vote on a couple that we think would be good openers for the specific show we’re planning at the time. After we vote, we send our top choices to the headlining act, who then has to approve of the opener. If we get the headliner’s approval, then we book the opener! After the opening band signs a contract, they’re all set to play at the show. We’re always looking for more bands who would be interested in opening for our concerts, so please contact me if you’re interested!
-Colleen Donoghue, Research Chair Center Stage Committee