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Tea Leaves

When sport and music collide in Asia

Regional fans of imported acts should take a critical look at 'value for money'

Eighties pop superband Duran Duran perform during their "Red Carpet Massacre" tour in 2008, when the author saw them play in Seoul.      © Reuters

There is only one band that I've seen in concert in both its home country and Asia and that is Duran Duran. The first time was in the mid-1990s in London and the second time was in Seoul in April 2008. The Korean performance was memorably described by The Korea Times: "Throughout the show, fans cheered, waved their arms and danced to the music like they were still teenagers." I'm not sure that applied to me, but it was a lot of fun.

Such live experiences were greatly missed by both fans and artists during the pandemic lockdowns. But big-name concerts are now returning with a vengeance, with Asian music fans paying top dollar to watch big international acts. There is little doubt that Asia will be a prime destination for a steady stream of famed musicians, many of whom struggled financially during the pandemic. The region offers a large fan base, large venues and lucrative revenue in the world's biggest continent.

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