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Great Park Amphitheater Plans Move Forward

Plans for a permanent amphitheater in Irvine’s Great Park are moving forward, but a temporary venue will first take its place.

Work has begun on the 5,000-seat interim theater, “to be able to avoid a gap in the delivery of live music in Irvine,” the city said in a statement.

The Irvine City Council last month approved a $6.6 million budget for the temporary theater, dubbed Great Park Live. Officials are aiming to get the venue up and running this summer.

“Keeping the temporary amphitheater available as a local asset year-round for community and recreational events such as school graduations, fundraising galas, city signature events and other event rentals, expands usage and can offset fixed costs,” city filings said.

PSQ Productions LLC, an Irvine-based event production and venue management company, will be setting up and operating Great Park Live.

Officials aim to host about 15 to 20 shows during the interim theater’s first season this year. Five of those performances will be by the Pacific Symphony, which will use the venue as its summer home.

Other entertainment will potentially include touring acts and those previously featured in the Irvine Nights summer night market.

The temporary theater seats less than half of the park’s current live event venue, the 12,000-seat FivePoint Amphitheater, which closed its doors last October after Live Nation Entertainment Inc. (LYV: NYSE) decided against operating the venue anymore.

Live Nation previously had plans for a pricey permanent theater at the Great Park, largely funded by the city, that was ultimately rebuffed by the city.

Up to 10K Seats

The latest plans for a permanent theater in the city, dubbed the Great Park Amphitheater, will house 8,000 to 10,000 seats.

Irvine City Council last month approved a $15 million budget for the venue, which is expected to deliver in 2027.

Construction for the theater will begin in 2026; ASM Global, a Los Angeles-based venue and event management company, will handle planning and design.

The city has also tapped Kansas City, Mo.-based global architectural firm Populous Inc. to provide architecture and engineering services for the city.

Pacific Symphony Partnership

Talks of a partnership between Pacific Symphony and the city of Irvine began last year.
Several members of the orchestra expressed their support for the collaboration during a public comment session last September.

The construction of the temporary theater will also include food and beverage stands made of refashioned shipping containers.

The area will “serve as a gathering place for the neighborhood for the next two to three years until the planned retail center opens,” city filings said.

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Sonia Chung
Sonia Chung
Sonia Chung joined the Orange County Business Journal in 2021 as their Marketing Creative Director. In her role she creates all visual content as it relates to the marketing needs for the sales and events teams. Her responsibilities include the creation of marketing materials for six annual corporate events, weekly print advertisements, sales flyers in correspondence to the editorial calendar, social media graphics, PowerPoint presentation decks, e-blasts, and maintains the online presence for Orange County Business Journal’s corporate events.
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