The Fenway Sports Group, Live Nation, MGM, and the City of Boston celebrated the grand opening of the MGM Music Hall at Fenway on August 22 with a ceremony inside the new venue, which is located at 2 Lansdowne St., adjacent to Fenway Park. The event was emceed by singer and recording artist Michelle Brooks-Thompson.
Groundbreaking on the 91,000 square foot music hall took place in November of 2019. The building is LEED Gold certified and features 331 solar panels on the roof, and has capacity for 5,000 patrons. The venue boasts an 80 foot by 40 foot stage, and the farthest seat is 110 feet away.
According to venue details, “the venue includes state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems, seating on four levels, three lounge areas, including an open-air rooftop deck with views of the downtown Boston skyline, and numerous food and beverage areas.”
Fenway Sports Group (FSG) principal owner John Henry said at the grand opening event, “acoustically and visually, you’re standing in Boston’s most amazing musical venue.”
Mayor Michelle Wu said, “I am so grateful for the vision, the commitment; the many, many teams that have been involved in getting us to this incredible opening.” She added, “to unlock what is possible for generations of Bostonians to find their passions, get connected to careers, and have fun and feel connected to our city.”
She thanked all of the project’s leaders as well as designers, builders, and architects for their work, as well as expressed her gratitude for the venue’s partnership with the Boston Arts Academy (BAA), which is set to return to its brand-new Fenway location very soon.
“This project will generate tens of millions of dollars of revenue for our local businesses,” Wu said. Already, the construction created over 200 jobs, and the venue will open with 80 full time workers and 450 part time workers.
“A world class city deserves infrastructure that allows us to move around, deserves the best education for our young people and deserves the spaces to create joy and build community that this now takes us to the next level for,” Wu said. “I am so grateful and excited for what will come here and look forward to returning for many more important events and shows in the future.”
Tom Werner, FSG and Boston Red Sox Chairman, said that Don Law from Live Nation, which will operate the venue jointly with Fenway Sports Management, “has been showing off the music hall to touring agents, and unanimously they all feel that this could become the iconic best place for music in our country.”
Keys were presented to Law, Mayor Wu, and Anne Clark, BAA President, as a “symbol” of the partnership.
Sam Kennedy, CEO of the Red Sox, also provided remarks.
“It was almost three years ago that our group gathered in this very spot to break ground on this spectacular venue,” he said. “It was a cold November morning. We stood in what was an empty triangular parking lot that served as a service yard for Fenway and we took photos shoveling mounds of dirt while trying to imagine what this space might become. I have to say, at that time, no rendering could do justice to what the experience of this place has become.”
After a performance by Boston Arts Academy students, District 8 City Councilor Kenzie Bok said that “One of the facts that I love is that in this age of ballparks named after all kinds of companies, Fenway Park is named after the neighborhood in which it resides. That word ‘Fenway’ has come to be this two-sided coin.”
She talked about the “connection” that young artists will be able to feel as this space is meant to be one where top artists as well as emerging young artists can all take the stage.
“We’re just so excited to have you all as partners in building that really connected and whole and equitable arts community here in the City of Boston,” Bok said.
The venue officially opens on August 29, with a performance by James Taylor and his All-Star Band. On Sept. 7, 9, and 11, Bruno Mars will take the stage. The calendar of events for the MGM Music Hall can be found at livenation.com/venue/KovZ917AEJz/mgm-music-hall-at-fenway-events.