It was the worst kept secret that the band KISS was planning to make a stop in the Okanagan with their latest tour and on Tuesday the rockers announced it would be in Kelowna.
“It became apparent to us four weeks ago there was a bidding competition with Kelowna,” said South Okanagan Events Centre manager Dean Clarke. “We worked seamlessly with our full advisory board and our partner Invictus Entertainment and put four offers in but it came to the point where we had to let it go.”
KISS, who have sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, are bringing their 2013 Monster world tour to Kelowna’s Prospera Place on July 8 after kicking off the Canadian leg of the tour on July 5 in Victoria and then playing Rogers Arena in Vancouver on July 6. The tour name reflects their latest album, which is scheduled to be released in October.
“The one good thing here is that the event is still in the Okanagan and people don’t have to drive to Vancouver. If we don’t have the dates or they are unable to play our venue we do encourage the artists agent to play in the Okanagan whether that is Prospera Place or Interior Savings in Kamloops. We always want and encourage things to happen in the Okanagan,” said Clarke.
The SOEC manager said somehow it was leaked out to a website that KISS was considering coming to the Okanagan. In the last few weeks there has also been talk of it circulating on social media sites and forums. Clarke said while they typically don’t publicly discuss the events that they are working on getting, or the ones they have passed over, he recalls not getting a KISS show when they were touring in 2011 being a touchy subject.
“We knew by the end of this week when the hype starts about the KISS concert there was going to be some questions of why they didn’t come to Penticton and we didn’t want to have this assumption out there that we got scooped,” said Clarke. “We win a lot more of these then we let go.”
Joining KISS on the tour will be opening act Shinedown. This year marks the 40th anniversary of KISS, which was formed by Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, who joined up with drummer Peter Criss and Ace Frehley. Over time Criss and Frehley left the band, replaced today by Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer. Their long list of hits include Rock and Roll All Night, Beth, Detroit Rock City and I Was Made For Loving You. Simmons is well known for his popular reality show, Gene Simmons Family Jewels, which centres on his family life with wife, former Playboy model Shannon Tweed, who is Canadian, and his kids Nick and Sophie.
Tickets for the Kelowna show go on sale this Friday and will cost $90 and $126 each. They are available at www.livenation.com, at the Prospera box office or by calling 1-250-762-5050.