When Britney Spears blew out her knee shooting
a music video, the plug got pulled on the remainder of her Onyx Hotel Tour, leaving several concert venue directors in the lurch — and costing the pop princess as much as $1 million a week in revenue from ticket and merchandise sales.

“We had 48 hours to put a package together so we could sell tickets in enough time,” Bob Babisch, entertainment director of Milwaukee’s Summerfest, which had 23,000 seats to fill, tells The New York Times. Stepping in for Spears: The Steve Miller and the Bodeans. As for Spears’s not showing up, Babisch deadpanned: “It keeps things interesting, I’ll say that.”

According to the concert trade publication Pollstar, Spears, 22, reportedly is losing $727,000 per city in weekly ticket sales (average ticket price is $61), and millions more in souvenirs, which, all told, were said to account for $10 million in additional sales.

Clear Channel Communications, which was promoting Britney’s tour, would not respond to such questions as who will pay for the losses incurred by the show’s cancellation.

Pollstar editor Gary Bongiovanni tells The Times that Spears — who is said to be recuperating with the aid of her dancer boyfriend, Kevin Federline — probably stands to be the biggest monetary loser in the cancellation. Without Spears’s knee in shape, he adds, her fans can’t get their kicks from the star.

“With her, it’s all about the dancing and the movement,” says Bongiovanni. “She can’t just sit there and sing.”


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