Viejas Entertainment and Production has struck a deal with Nederlander Concerts for the latter to be the exclusive talent booker for all Viejas venues, including the 2,500-capacity, outdoor Concerts in the Park and 750-capacity indoor club DreamCatcher, both of which are located about 25 miles outside of San Diego at the Viejas Casino complex.

"We're delighted to have been selected by Viejas and [Viejas president] Tony San Pietro when there are other San Diego promoters who have a more established base there," Nederlander Concerts CEO Adam Friedman tells Billboard.biz. "From my perspective, I believe we were selected because of our experience in the small and mid-sized space, and our ability to leverage our other ...venues throughout the region, including the Santa Barbara (Calif.) Bowl, the Greek Theatre (in L.A.) and the Grove (Anaheim)."

Friedman says the deal works on two levels for Nederlander, including "the broader strategy, the regional strategy in expanding the footprint so we can create routing opportunities that make sense for artists," he says. "And the sub-strategy is to secure operating and booking rights at premier small and mid-sized venues which compliment and leverage our core assets - the Greek, the Grove, Santa Barbara Bowl, Maricopa County Events Center in Phoenix - which act really as the foundation for our routing strategy and from which we're leveraging growth."

Established in 2000, Viejas Entertainment and Production is owned by the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians and promotes shows in San Diego at Concerts in the Park and DreamCatcher.

The relationship between the two companies began earlier this year when Nederlander Concerts successfully booked comedian Carlos Mencia and singer Daughtry at Concerts in the Park, under the direction of Lesley Olenik, director of talent for Nederlander Concerts. Olenik previously worked for Viejas Entertainment and Production for three years.

Friedman and Alex Hodges, COO of Nederlander Concerts, struck a deal with Viejas back in 2000 when both were still with House Of Blues Concerts (HOB). HOB also opened the Coors Amphitheatre (now a Live Nation property) in nearby Chula Vista in 1998.

"Alex and I had a lot of years in San Diego, I believe we certainly changed the face of the market when we were down there," says Friedman. "Nederlander has not had that presence there, and clearly this would be considered new market entry."

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