Nearly every day I drive past SDSU’s big electronic sign that greets travellers on Interstate 8. For some time now I have noticed advertisements for the upcoming speakers series. Speakers included James Carville, Ann Coulter, and Rudy Gulliani. But it seems that the series has been cancelled due to low ticket sales. Only 120 tickets had been sold for three different nights of speakers … and that is in an auditorium that will hold thousands.
That’s why I chuckled when I saw the price tag: $193-313 per ticket per night. For SDSU students, ticket prices were originally $300, then $160, then $25. Even $25 is a bit pricey for college students.
Here’s the full article from the San Diego State Aztec describing the cancellation:
Series called off
Poor ticket sales force cancellation
Stephanie Nehmens, Assistant city editor
The price tag was too high, even for an event such as this.Promoters for the San Diego Speaker Series had no choice but to cancel all planned events on Friday because of poor ticket sales.The event was scheduled for three separate nights during the fall semester to host five of America’s prominent political figures, starting with former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani on Sept. 26.Other figures expected to speak included Ann Coulter, James Carville, Bob Dole and Wesley Clark.
Ticket prices for general-public seating in Cox Arena for all three nights ranged from $193.50 to $313.50.For San Diego State students, ticket prices were originally almost $300, but dropped to about $160 and finally went down to a special price of $25 per night.
There were more than 6,400 seats available for each event night in Cox Arena, and as of last week, there had only been 120 tickets sold for all three events, Cox Arena Director John Kolek said.”Not only were the ticket sales bad, but it would have been embarrassing for the speakers to see as well,” Kolek said.
The San Diego Speaker Series is co-operated by Guy Levy, an SDSU alumnus who said that after attending speaker series’ elsewhere, he wanted to bring a similar kind of series to educate the San Diego population.But following the cancellation, SDSU students won’t have that opportunity this year.
“I was so disappointed – I thought it was going to be a really good series,” Associated Students President Matt Keipper said. “I had tickets to all three.”I think it would’ve been a great educational experience to see both sides of the political spectrum. I really wanted to see Giuliani.”
Kolek said that there is no talk of rescheduling the event, and if speakers do come to Cox Arena, the structure of the event will be different. Series ticket holders will be getting most of their deposit money back, except for a non-refundable fee that SDSU charges, Kolek said.
He said he is currently trying to fill the available nights in Cox Arena, but does not have any events scheduled yet.Those who bought tickets to the series can receive a refund at the respective ticket offices where they had been purchased.