Tribute bands aren’t just for the corner bar anymore. While covering the work of other musicians is as old as music itself, it’s become an increasingly booming business that has expanded from the taverns to larger nightclubs and historical theaters. Last Saturday, a sold-out crowd filled St. Paul’s Ordway Center for the Performing Arts for a full performance of Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” presented by the Toronto-based Classic Albums Live. It was the fifth time the group has played the venue, a great example of the public’s thirst for musical nostalgia, even if it’s not delivered by the original source. “There were scalpers selling tickets,” marveled Jamie Grant, the Ordway’s president and CEO. “(Classic Albums Live) has turned into one of the most fun evenings in the theater. We’re very proud of how it’s done for us.” In 2012, Chanhassen Dinner Theatres experimented with offering tribute bands in its 236-seat — and at that point underused — Fireside Theatre. A handful of bookings has since blossomed into a robust business that’s expected to gross $500,000 this year, according to CDT vice president and resident choreographer Tamara Kangas Erickson. “The first full year, I was booking every other weekend on Friday and… Read full this story
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