The three-way speakers, Prince and Lizzo posters and signature chandeliers are all hung. Now all that’s needed at the Minneapolis installment of Live Nation’s Fillmore-branded concert venues is staff to work the doors, stage and bars before the Feb. 12 opening gig.
An ambitious new North Loop music hall run by the international concert corporation that also owns Ticketmaster, the Fillmore offered media representatives a preview tour Friday timed to a job fair this weekend.
Live Nation representatives will meet with applicants Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the nearly finished venue, next to Target Field Station at 525 N. 5th St. They are looking for bar and restaurant workers, security and stage team members, ticket sellers and other staff.
The 1,800-person, two-story club also features an adjoining burger bar called Trax, which opens Feb. 3, and a VIP bar called BG’s Lounge, named after legendary concert promoter Bill Graham, who booked artists like Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin at the original Fillmore in San Francisco.
It all adjoins a new 160-room Element by Westin hotel, due to open later this month under new ownership, the Duluth-based Lion Hotel Group.
“It’s done. It’s ready!” cheered the club’s general manager, Tad Dugan, who had run a Salt Lake City club called the Depot that Live Nation purchased three years ago.
Unlike many of the eight other Fillmores around the country — as well as Live Nation’s dozens of House of Blues rock clubs — the Minneapolis Fillmore was built from the ground up in partnership with United Properties, the development arm of the Pohlad family, which also owns the Minnesota Twins.
Live Nation representatives stressed the “top-of-the-line” production elements, including tiered seats that provide excellent sightlines from the 500-capacity, wraparound balcony. There are also rounded columns and “air pockets” in the walls and ceilings to soften the acoustics during concerts (and keep noise out of the adjoining hotel).
Visually, the room plays up the psychedelic history of the Fillmore brand as well as Minnesota’s own storied musical past. Downstairs bars are lined with day-glo-colored, hippie-happy murals lit by black lights.
Both the entryway and the upstairs VIP bar boast concert posters from some of Minnesota’s best-known music makers, including the Replacements, Lizzo, Atmosphere, Owl City, the Jayhawks, Bob Dylan and Prince. The purple legend is also emblazoned across a mural near the second-floor bar.
Most eye-catching of all, four shimmering chandeliers hang over the large, wood dance floor in front of the tall stage. The chandeliers were a trademark of the original Fillmore and are featured in all the newly franchised outlets, including Denver, New Orleans, Philadelphia and Silver Spring, Md.
“We intend to give fans the best concert experiences they’ve ever had and earn their trust to spend their hard-earned money here,” said David Fortin, senior vice president of marketing for Live Nation’s Los Angeles-based nightclub and theater division.
Fortin made that comment after being asked about ticket prices. With the large number of VIP/premium-priced tickets and accompanying Ticketmaster fees, fans have wondered if the Fillmore’s hi-fi production will come at too high a cost.
The grand-opening concerts Feb. 12-14 with Brandi Carlile started at $112 per ticket and went up to over $600 for “platinum” tickets (after fees).
The venue will open its box office on a daily basis starting Feb. 1 so fans can avoid online fees. Fillmore tickets already are available at the Varsity Theater, a smaller Minneapolis venue run by Live Nation.
About 40 concerts have been announced for the Fillmore, including Motion City Soundtrack’s hometown reunion shows Feb. 15-17, Yung Gravy (Feb. 21), Buddy Guy (Feb. 27), Rüfüs Du Sol (Feb. 28-29), Bob Weir & the Wolf Bros. (March 10) and Evanescence (May 14). All are on sale now through Ticketmaster.
612-673-4658 • @ChrisRstrib