Skip to main content

One of NYC’s most iconic music venues, Webster Hall, is going corporate.

The 131 year old building, which has been run by the Ballinger family for the past 27 years, has been sold to AEG Presents and Barclay’s Center corporate parent, Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment. The deal is speculated to be valued at $35 million, while ownership is split 50-50 between AEG and BSE.

AEG recently acquired promoter Bowery Presents, which will take control of booking and marketing for the venue. Interestingly, Bowery Presents actually used to have exclusive booking rights for Webster up until March 2014, when the venue took control of promotion itself. Moreover, it currently handles booking for Mercury Lounge and Bowery Ballroom, both situated in Manhattan.

This deal is another step in AEG’s attempt to dominate the music market in New York, as it previously launched Panorama Festival on Randall’s Island, in 2016, and aides in operations in Brooklyn venues Barclays Center and the newly renovated Nassau Coliseum. Webster would be the company’s first Manhattan nightspot, and a great one at that, given it was named Pollstar’s nightclub of the year last year, based on ticket sales by volume. On top of that, the concert hall is even designated as an official New York City landmark!

Webster is famous for its gritty time-tested atmosphere, but that’s about to change. According to Billboard, AEG chairman Jay Marciano stated that the company plans to spend around $10 million renovating most of the major spaces in the building, “to bring them up to contemporary standards and add a few more customer features.” For some, this is a welcomed and much needed change. For others, not so much. Many patrons love Webster’s current brazen feel, as it’s something that sets the venue apart from other concert halls in the city, and makes for a unique experience. Moreover, many appreciate the venue’s focus on providing an affordable night out, with weekly free guest lists, as well as plentiful giveaways and relatively cheap ticket prices. With new corporate management, some are afraid all that may change too.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles


One Dead, Dozens Injured After Stage Collapses at Spanish EDM Festival

Sources say Medusa experienced "strong gusts of wind" that led to the death of a 22-year-old man after part of the festival's main stage collapsed.


Look Inside SOMA Tent, the Best Dancefloor at Outside Lands 2022

In a "festival full of festivals," the vibes at the SOMA Tent were as irresistible as they were untamed.


Hardwell Opens Up About His Soul-Stirring Road to Reinvention: "It Feels Way More Like Freedom"

A candid interview with Hardwell, who is creating, performing and living on his own terms after over a decade in electronic dance music.

Another thing Webster excels at, is regularly hosting a diverse array of acts. The venue works tirelessly to bring talent - ranging from newcomers to mainstream hits, and from rock’n’roll to trance - to its doors. With so much changing at Webster, there is some serious concern that the music hall may no longer work towards providing the universal lineups it’s known for, particularly when it comes to underground acts.

However, BSE CEO Brett Yormark hopes Webster Hall, and other AEG facilities, become hotspots for rising artists who aspire to play big arena shows at Nassau Coliseum and Barclays Center. He said, "We're trying to diversify our venue portfolio so we can connect with artists early and often," adding, "We have a progression approach that allows us to get to know them and let them understand the experience they'll have when they play one of our venues."

While the NYC electronic music community eagerly awaits to see what the new management does with the beloved venue, we can only hope the only change to come is positive and universally welcomed!

H/T: Billboard

Cover photo courtesy of Webster Hall


A crowd shot from inside historic New York City (NYC) venue Webster Hall.

The Historic Webster Hall Plans to Bring Back Club Nights

The renovated music venue is set to reinstall their famous Saturday night parties.

A crowd shot from inside historic New York City (NYC) venue Webster Hall.

Webster Hall to Reopen in 2019 Following Renovations

New York City is about to get one of its staple venues back.

Elements Festival NYC


If you're in NYC, Elements is the place to be this weekend.

Fireworks over the main stage at Electric Zoo

Avant Gardner Acquires Made Event, Electric Zoo for $15 Million

A major acquisition rocks New York nightlife.

Rendering of the 2022 redesign of The Brooklyn Mirage

Brooklyn Mirage Unveils Venue Redesign Ahead of Stacked Summer Season

Featuring one of the world's largest outdoor video walls, Brooklyn Mirage is primed for an unprecedented summer.


Celebrated Electronic Music Venue U Street Music Hall Closes After 10 Years

A-Trak, Herobust, CRAY, and more took to social media to lament the news.

Native Instruments


Innovation for Native Instruments means innovation for electronic music.