KIIS-FM and iHeartRadio event had been held at L.A. Live since 2009
One of LA's biggest holiday radio shows is moving across town to new digs in Inglewood. KIIS-FM's long running Jingle Ball is moving to The Forum after eight years at the AEG-owned Staples Center and Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live, Billboard has learned.
The full-day event, promoted by iHeartMedia, is one of the biggest radio shows in the country, and garners significant media attention. Last year's Jingle Ball included performances by Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Meghan Trainor, Shawn Mendes, Diplo and Niall Horan. Besides LA, iHeartMedia tours Jingle Ball each December — in 2016, the tour made 12 stops in the U.S. Billboard reached out to representatives from iHeartMedia, but was told no one from the company would be commenting for this story.
The relocation of Jingle Ball from Staples Center to The Forum is the latest flare-up in the ongoing venue wars between AEG and the Forum's MSG Azoff Entertainment. Earlier this year, Irving Azoff acknowledged that a tying arrangement existed between the Forum and Madison Square Garden in New York, a move designed to outmaneuver Staples Center for concerts. He later clarified the policy and said both the Forum and the Garden "will accept business from any performer that wishes to play."
In response, AEG officials warned that they were updating their booking policy at the O2 Arena in London and blocking bands who skip Staples Center from playing at the British venue. AEG also threatened to pull financial support from concert industry trade magazine Pollstar after it was bought by the Oak View Group, a consortium owned by Azoff and former AEG CEO Tim Leiweke.
Losing Jingle Ball is a symbolic blow for AEG — while most radio shows aren't huge money makers, they generate a ton of publicity and attract a broad cross-section of talent, creating an opportunity to deepen relationships with artists. KIIS-FM also stages the annual Wango Tango summer concert, which has been held at the AEG-owned Stubhub Center in Carson, California since 2012.