On Friday, April 5, 2013, country music superstar Kenny Chesney opened Austin 360 Amphitheater at Circuit of The Americas. Chesney’s “No Shoes Nation” tour, began in March and includes stops in 46 cities in the United States and Canada. This concert marked the much anticipated official grand opening of Austin 360 Amphitheater, which “will be the largest outdoor entertainment venue in Central Texas, with the No. 1 ticket seller in country music today,” Circuit President Steve Sexton said. “Kenny Chesney is a remarkable and engaging performer, a true fan favorite and one of the elite touring artists in the world. Austin 360 Amphitheater will showcase the biggest names in music, and for our very first show, it doesn’t get much bigger than Kenny Chesney.”
Austin 360 Amphitheater is an extraordinary open-air venue located at the base of Circuit’s signature 251-foot observation tower. It truly provides artists and their fans an amazing backdrop for live performances. It has the capacity to host up to 14,000 guests and is expected to feature more than 15 shows during its inaugural season. It offers the largest permanent stage in Austin, Texas, a city proudly known internationally as the “Live Music Capital of the World.” It has fixed seating for 5,240, floor seating for 1,700 people or general admission floor shows for 2,300 guests. There are 18 premium loge boxes, multiple concessions on both sides of the stage and throughout the Grand Plaza. Even guests purchasing tickets in the grass area can get a great view from the jumbo screens and get a wonderful view of the show. The venue is a great addition to the Austin-area music scene.
Last summer, Circuit of The Americas announced that it had entered into a booking agreement with Live Nation, the world’s largest live music and entertainment company, to bring a variety of major concerts to the Circuit’s Austin 360 Amphitheater. Live Nation will schedule and produce major and national touring events and bring popular, top-selling artists to perform at our world-class facility.
That being said, Kenny Chesney was a great debut for the facility. He is on his 11th consecutive tour with more than one million tickets sold and will have performed 101 stadium concerts after this summer’s tour. He is a CMT and AMA “Artist of the Year,” a four-time CMA “Entertainer of the Year,” and a four-time ACM “Entertainer of the Year.” Chesney has 24 No. 1 Singles and has sold more than 30 million albums. Last year Chesney was the winner of the Billboard Touring “Top Package” Award for the year’s top-grossing concert tour and its “Road Warrior” Award, celebrating uncommon work ethic, professionalism and artistic integrity.
Opening for Kenny Chesney was up-and-coming country artist and Texas native Kacey Musgraves. The 24-year-old singer-songwriter released her first single, the critically acclaimed “Merry Go Round,” last September and will drop her debut album this spring. Musgraves proudly announced that she was the very first artist ever to perform at this venue and performed a great set she herself described as “pretty mindblowing.” Musgraves offered a half hour set that seemed to hit home with smoldering country songs like “Merry Go Round,” and “Mama’s Broken Heart” which she wrote for Miranda Lambert.
After a few minutes of featuring a psychedelic video montage that got the crowd going wild, Kenny Chesney appeared singing the rock-country “Feel Like A Rock Star.” Chesney’s mass appeal is that he intertwines new and traditional-style country. You don’t have to like country music to like Kenny, but if you do, you’re still going to like him.
Chesney seems as unassuming and genuine as can be to his fans and gave his performance 110%. Within minutes of being on stage, his shirt was soaked right through and he didn’t slow down for one second of the 2+ hours he was on stage. Between songs, Chesney spoke about his values and what was important to him as a child. Austin fans cheered wildly when he brought up his love of football and invited famous UT Head Coach Mack Brown on stage for a genuine heartwarming embrace. Before exiting the stage, they gave their fans the “hook ’em horns” hand gesture. Every aspect of the evening seemed to have come together impeccably. The sound, lighting, staging, and even weather was perfect and this venue’s debut shows great promise for the future of Austin 360 Amphitheater.
Experienced marketing professional; Live music photographer and writer covering the music scene, the arts, SWSW, festivals, local events, family attractions, Broadway, and travel. Social media enthusiast with a passion for events marketing, music and photography. As a marketing consultant, I enjoy learning and teaching about using social media tools to build relationships and drive business.