herald

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Pacman gig pulled as ticket sales fail to pack any punch

THE punters may want to see Manny Pacquiao (pictured) box, but they definitely don't want to see him sing live.

Citing poor ticket sales, promoters cancelled the world champion's concert that was to be held last Sunday at the Waikiki Shell in Honolulu.

Ryan Chang of Island Fire Productions said last week only 603 tickets had been sold for 'Manny Pacquiao Live In Hawaii Concert Celebration'.

"The Shell holds about 8,500 people and we only needed to sell about 2,500 tickets to break even and we would have been happy," Chang said. "But I can't risk losing that much of our investors' money on walkups and late sales this week. A good walkup is about 500 people. As it stands I'll be taking about a $50,000 loss."

Pacquiao, whose pay-per-view take and fight purse from his unanimous decision over Joshua Clottey is expected to be between $17m and $20m, was going to earn $100,000 for performing at the concert.

He was going to sing for an hour with his MP Band and he was going to give away an autographed replica of the IBO light welterweight championship belt he earned with his win over Ricky Hatton last May.

More than 20 other musicians, djs, jugglers, dancers and magicians were also scheduled to take part in the concert.

Pacquiao's draw as a boxer is phenomenal. Cowboys Stadium was set up for 45,000 people to watch his last fight, but more than 50,000 tickets were sold, meaning more than 5,000 fans had "party seats" where they could be in the stadium and watch it on the massive big screen but had limited or no view of the ring itself.

In the ring, he didn't disappoint those who feel he is the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world. He threw more than three times as many punches as Clottey and judges had him winning every round but one.

As a singer, Pacquiao isn't nearly as accomplished. He had two albums go platinum in the Philippines, but YouTube videos of his singing performances have shown him struggling to hit notes and keep his tone. Chang said he's hoping to negotiate to bring Pacquiao back sometime in the future. "I don't know what to say about what happened," Chang said.

"We thought Hawaii would appreciate bringing him in. We needed to either pull out now or make about $175,000 to break even. I couldn't risk dropping that much for my investors."

Tickets for the concert ranged from $25 to $150, with the highest-priced seats including a meet-and-greet with Pacquiao.

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