Court orders ticket refund for ‘bad’ concert

Court orders ticket refund for ‘bad’ concert


norman lebrecht

July 06, 2015

In a landmark precedential ruling with widespread ramifications, the Consumer Court in Finland has ordered promoters to refund a ticketholder who attended a disappointing Chuck Berry performance. The complainant, it ruled, was entitled to half his or her money back.

Feel free to quote this judgement next time an international soloist phones in a concerto, a conductor beats time in his sleep or an orchestra gives the impression it would rather be anywhere but here, and now.

audience pic

how it should be, always


  • Angela Rodion says:

    Or when an ageing non-baritone coasts his way through a rôle the management had no business casting him in? It’s hard to prove intangibles Mr Lebrecht, very hard, along with the objectivity of the audience member who complains.

  • pooroperaman says:

    Oh good. Royal Opera House, you owe me for Guillaume Tell!

    • Angela Rodion says:

      Haha, you’re so right. But, as a friend of mine in Vienna tells me when I complain about rotten performances: “well, I blame you for going!”

  • AZ Cowboy says:

    Wish this could apply to movies that are hyped by the studios but really are pretty lousy. And even to CDs!

    • GONZALEZ says:

      I once went to the theater to watch one of those hyped movies and left after the first 10 minutes. The manager refunded the price of my ticket and offered me to enter in any of the other movies being shown… for free! That turned out to be a good day.

  • John says:

    Were I the director of Covent Garden I most certainly would contact urgently my lawyers about that one…

    • V.Lind says:

      What nonsense. The general reviews of the production — at least the singing — have been excellent. That the taste/preference/vision of the director was at odds with a lot of the audience’s in one scene hardly makes a production worth suing about. I’ve never seen such a load of cobblers about a scene in an opera — and one that wrought reaction out of people. What else is theatre for?

      If you do not want to see someone else’s staging of a particular favourite, perhaps the whole thing should be reduced to Opera-in-Concert. (With which there is nothing wrong, but I prefer the more exhilarating experience of fully staged versions, even when I disagree with the approach).

    • Martin says:

      The rock singer, the only one who matters on stage for that particular show in question, should have cancelled due to his sickness.

      A comparable situation in classical music is a recital, not an opera. And for sure not an opera which, according to reviews, is sung and played well.

  • jaypee says:

    It has to be said that Chuck Berry’s latest “concerts” are, to put it bluntly, disasters. It is quite unfortunate considering Berry’s importance in the history of rock’n’roll: forget Elvis! No Chuck Berry, no rock’n’roll. It’s as simple as that. His technique was very good, his singing perfect and his compositions -both music and texts- conntain several classics (Too Much Monkey Business, School Days, Roll Over Beethoven, Rock and Roll Music, Carol and of course, Johnny B. Goode). Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, John Lennon have all expressed what they owe to the great man. Richard Thompson has described him as the Shakespeare of rock’n’roll…
    But… someone somewhere is now trying to exploit the old man and insist in putting him on stage despite the fact that he can’t play anymore. Hell: he’ll soon be 89!
    It is not only sad but criminal. Instead of sueing the concert organizer, I’d sue the person who’s exploiting Chuck Berry.