Concert association calling it quits

By LAURA LEIGH MONTEREY

News Review Correspondent

In an apparent attempt to stem the tide of rumor, Indian Wells Valley Concert Association President Julius Botelho announced, prior to the Julian G concert Thursday at the Ridgecrest Church of the Nazarene, that the organization is bowing out.

“We’ve had to cancel the rest of the season,” said Botelho, who blamed impact from the earthquakes. “We can’t afford to do the shows. It’s just too expensive.”

IWVCA had lined up several shows to perform in the Parker Auditorium for the Performing Arts at Burroughs High School. When the auditorium suffered earthquake damage, the association had to move or reschedule several acts.

He did not expand upon how the earthquakes affected IWVCA’s bottom line, though.

“We were about $45,000 short going into the season,” Botelho said. The advantage to IWVCA, from Botelho’s point of view, is that if the show loses money, “DEF will cover it.”

According to Marshall “Chip” Holloway, CEO of the Desert Empire Fairgrounds, the final arrangements are still being worked out, but IWVCA tickets will be honored — a point that Botelho also emphasized in his recent announcement.

Botelho said that IWVCA is sending letters via email to ticket holders announcing the changes to come. Although he addressed some 135 concertgoers, Botelho said he wanted to keep the news quiet. “If I had known you were in the room,” he told this reporter in a later phone interview, “I wouldn’t have made that announcement.”

Botelho said that until the contracts are signed, he has no firm details. “At this time, there is no news,” he said. He added that he will be announce details within a few weeks, though he did not specify whether he would inform the media or just ticket-holders.

In a separate interview, Holloway indicated that DEF had indeed agreed to underwrite some of the acts, but not all. Others would remain with IWVCA, some even being rescheduled out as far as sometime in 2021. With the final negotiations yet to take place, ticket-holders are advised to watch for email updates.

As for the future, Holloway did not quash the idea of DEF continuing to offer concerts in the valley. “I had been thinking of it anyway,” he said. All that remains are the final details surrounding the acts currently signed with IWVCA. “We’re still negotiating.”

Story First Published: 2019-10-04