Corralling Shania Twain a big ‘get’ for Calgary Stampede

Calgary Herald
By Mike Bell
January 17, 2014

Consider it a “get” of Garth Brooksian proportions.

In heels.

On Thursday, the Calgary Stampede announced it had booked Canadian country superstar Shania Twain for its upcoming event. The Timmins, Ont., native will play the Saddledome July 9 during the 10-day party, with tickets for the show ranging from $89.25 to $149.25 (plus service charges), and going on sale to the general public beginning Jan. 24 at 10 a.m. from, in person at Ticketmaster outlets and by phone at 1-855-985-5000.

“The opportunity to have Canadian icon Shania Twain perform at the Calgary Stampede is incredible,” Adam Oppenheim, managing director of Stampede Concerts Inc., said of the first artist booked for the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth, which runs July 4-13 this year.

“She is beloved by so many and we couldn’t be happier that Stampede fans and visitors will be able to see her first concert outside of Vegas in more than 10 years.”

The parallels to the booking of Brooks two years ago for the Stampede’s centennial celebration are striking. Both acts were from the same era, enjoying their popularity during the new country movement of the ’90s. Also, both are at the top of the list when it comes to sales, awards and popularity for contemporary country acts, with each being among the bestselling country artists of their respective gender (150 million for Brooks and 80 million for his Canuckian counterpart) and Twain’s 1997 album Come On Over being the bestselling studio album by a female of any type of artist with almost 40 million sold.

Also. when tapped for a Stampede show, both artists were all but retired from touring and recording, with Las Vegas residencies the only way for fans to catch them live. In the case of Twain, her fourth and last studio record was 2002’s 20-million selling Up! — another record has been in the works and rumoured for the past three years — and her show Shania: Still the One has been playing Caesars Palace since December of 2012.

And, finally, perhaps the most important parallel: because of all of these reasons, the Twain ticket will be one of the most in-demand and hard-to-get ducats in North America. When Brooks’ tickets went up for grabs, they sold out in seconds, with many winding up on websites and at unbelievably inflated prices moments after, some even claimed before. That was due, in large part to pre-sales being offered to a number of different groups as well as Flames President Club ticket-holders who were given first dibs.

There was anger, there was indignation, there were threats and there was, of course, a certain segment of the population willing to take advantage of that by selling counterfeit tickets online to the desperate and, well, naive.

Expect the same thing with Twain, seeing as how the number of pre-sale options is similar, with Virgin Mobile members getting a crack beginning Jan. 21, and radio sponsors and Stampede Insiders following suit the next day.

All of this means, of course, that just like the Stampede booking Twain, if you manage to find yourself one of the lucky 15,000 or so holding a valid ticket to get into the Dome on July 9, you can consider it a pretty incredible get.