The future of concerts on the Halifax Common is in doubt as the promoter that has been staging them has gone out of business, leaving behind a trail of unpaid bills.
The president of Power Promotional Events, Harold MacKay, brought many big names to Halifax — from Paul McCartney to the Black Eyed Peas. But he admitted Tuesday that poor ticket sales at this summer's events left him unable to pay his suppliers
"The Black Eyed Peas wasn't as great as we had hoped, and we hoped a couple of weeks later, the country show would pull us out of it, and it wasn't enough to do it," said MacKay. "So, you have good and bad in this business. It's a very risky business, and we know that."
MacKay said his company has no assets. Instead of filing for bankruptcy, the company will simply cease to exist.
"We've exhausted all of the funds that we had and tried to pay as many creditors as we could," he said. "At the end of the day, we couldn't pay everybody, so we were forced to close the company."
Peter Hendrickson, president of Tour Tech, the company that provided the lighting and sound equipment for the Black Eyed Peas concert, said he knows of at least five companies, including his own, that are still owed money for that concert. All the affected suppliers are meeting Wednesday afternoon to decide their next move.
The city said Power Promotional Events has paid its $20,000 rental fee for this past summer.
There are no concerts planned for next summer because the speed skating oval that will be built on the Common for the 2011 Canada Games, which run until the end of February, won't leave enough room for a concert space.
"The [oval's] units come out in March … and then we have to wait until some good spring weather to do some of that work and to get things like grass to take," said Halifax Regional Municipality spokeswoman Shaune MacKinlay.