What Detroit Can Teach Miami About Live Entertainment: Affordability is Key
For readers who don’t know me, full disclosure: I am a proud born and raised Detroiter. Three-one-three and 2-4-8 pride is central to my Dry N Wet “Hart.” (Google it if you don’t get the reference.) And I live each day certain that I come from one of the greatest cities in the world. Motown, as the city is known by baby boomers, remains a powerhouse of music and entertainment – a live entertainment gem.
Sure it’s a city that’s fallen on hard times. Everyone knows that. At one point its infamous urban ruins were compared to a “crumbling Rome.” But there’s a reason Detroit also calls itself the “Renaissance City.” Unlike a decade ago so much good is happening on its storied streets that it’s exciting to watch. From Corktown and Downtown and along the Cass Corridor in Midtown and beyond, the city’s heart again has a pulse. In fact, there’s so much vibe in this vibrant city that it’s reaching a point where Detroit can teach Miami a thing or two about live entertainment.
As the birthplace of Techno and foundational to other musical genres it’s a position of cultural importance it rightly deserves. And a great new data point bears this out. The statistic I was pleased to discover and share with all of you? Detroit ranks 16 out of the world’s top 50 nightlife destinations. Miami? Sure, it made the list too – but near the bottom, 46 out of 50. (Pobre) New York City ranked 48 out of 50 and Ibiza, everyone’s supposedly favorite live entertainment Mediterranean getaway, came in last. Detroit even bested Berlin – an achievement I’m sure the city’s sizable Polish population celebrated.
Live Entertainment Shouldn't Break the Bank
So what is it that sets Detroit apart? What is it that this re-emerging metropolis can teach Miami and New York? It’s a simple lesson, really, but it bears repeating: don’t over charge for a live entertainment experience. Because before big labels arrive, it’s always about the people making the music – and entertainment solutions planners – that matter most.
If people can’t afford a live entertainment event, or feel that it’s not money well spent, they’ll take their money and their business elsewhere. In Miami, a city that like Detroit lives and breathes live entertainment, this is a scenario that shouldn’t happen. Except that it does – often.
According to the HomeToGo® Club Price Index, Miami failed in a number of key areas where Detroit excelled. In Miami for a live entertainment event:
· Average cover charge: $20.50
· Average price of a beer: $10
· Average price of a mixed drink: $15
· Average cost of a shot: $12
· Average cost for a night out with three drinks and cover, not including an Uber or Lyft (practically essential with Miami’s limited mass transit): $57.50
Of course, this is just Miami’s average numbers. In Brickell or in South Beach along Ocean Ave., Collins Ave. and Washington Ave. those numbers will be higher. Detroit, if you plan to visit, (Movement Electronic Music Festival is May 25-27) averaged $31.50, a whopping 45 percent less.
Mix’D: An Upscale Event Without Upmarket Pricing
At Dry N Wet, experts in live entertainment and event planning, our goal is to keep our audience in mind. To that end, we are dedicated to delivering a sophisticated upmarket experience to Miami’s nightlife. In many respects our goal is to emulate what you might see at the best venues abroad – or in Detroit. :)
Our Mix’D: A Mixology Experience features exactly that type of live entertainment feel. Mix'D started as a concept several years ago when Dry N Wet’s CEO moved to Miami from Europe. He found in Miami a scene quite different to the one he was used to. Crowded venues, poor service and overpriced drinks were the norm.
He also found in Miami an innovative Mixology scene. Establishments like the Broken Shaker, (now defunct) Tobacco Road, or Repour Bar offer their customers an unforgettable experience. Mix'D aims to bring the best of both worlds together. The event is designed to provide top-quality live entertainment from across the globe and the most groundbreaking drinks. And all of it comes in an atmosphere ideal to socialize, dance, and wind down from a week of hard work.
Best of all is that Mix’D pays homage to Detroit by its budget-conscious approach. Pre-event and at-the-door ticket prices are only $10, $1.50 less than the average cover charge in my home city. We also offer promotional pricing. Guests can enjoy free tastings of some of our most exotic drinks, concocted by some of the world’s best mixologists.
These “perks” may sound trivial but they’re not. For people who enjoy the sights, sounds, and scenes of live entertainment, little gestures like this add up. It also demonstrates Dry N Wet’s continuing community commitment. That, or our love for alliteration.
Live Entertainment Lesson Learned?
I know it can be tough to admit that Miami, the “Magic City,” can learn something from Detroit. Sure it’s got an abandoned building problem. Yes our violent crime rate at 2,057 per 100,000 people ranks second worst in the nation.And don’t even get me started on a recent 24/7 Wall St. survey that declared Tigertown the worst place to live in America – again!
But for a city clawing its way back from its 20th century nadir, where a touch of “Polish frugality” and exceptional live entertainment is just as much a part of its rich history I can think of no better place for Miami to emulate.
Former late night comedian David Letterman may have said it best, “I haven’t reached nirvana yet, but I’ve been to Detroit.”
So in my humble opinion, only when Miami is compared to nirvana, or “a state of perfect happiness; an ideal or idyllic place,” and when the city’s live entertainment scene better appreciates the value of a dollar spent, will my new home city truly learn its lesson.
Until it does, you can bet that Dry N Wet and its in-house former Detroiter will be there to help