New WaMu Theater in SeattleSeattle, WA- September 11, 2006 - AEG Live, one of the world's largest live entertainment companies ("AEG"), and Seattle-based First & Goal Inc. ("FGI") have formed a partnership to create a unique, multi purpose theater and corporate events facility within Seattle's Qwest Field Event Center.
AEG and FGI are also announcing that Washington Mutual, a Seattle based company, has agreed to a 10 year naming rights agreement for the new venue to be called the WaMu Theater.
"We are excited to partner with AEG and FGI on what we think is an innovative and dynamic music venue that will bring exciting entertainment to this city for years to come." said Washington Mutual Chairman and CEO, Kerry Killinger. "We are also thrilled that our customers will have the opportunity to participate in special ticket offerings including pre-sales surrounding theater events."
The state-of-the-art music and live entertainment venue, which features a flexible seating capacity ranging from 3,300 to 7,000, will showcase the industry's newest sound, lighting and other technological features as well as an array of guest friendly amenities and comforts. The theater's unique design and versatility will accommodate corporate and special events, seminars, television productions and other hospitality- related functions in record changeover times.
"We are thrilled to offer a new music experience in Seattle and believe this will be an outstanding venue within the Qwest Field Event Center," said Tod Leiweke, CEO, First & Goal. "The new design elements, technology and additional space, along with our partnership with AEG Live will enable us to bring additional high profile concerts and corporate meetings to the venue. We also are pleased that Washington Mutual will become our naming rights partner for this wonderful theater. Not only do they share our vision of creating the finest venue of its kind for Seattle, their philosophy of providing outstanding customer service is one that both AEG and FGI are clearly committed to as well" Leiweke added.
"WaMu Theater is bound to be one of the most unique and busiest venues in the country," said Randy Phillips, president & CEO, AEG Live. "There is clearly a need for a world-class theater in the Pacific Northwest and working with our partners at FGI, we have located an ideal setting to create a theater that artists will respect and that our guests will love going to. The technology and overall designs we are developing for WaMu Theater will be something that the industry has not seen and will likely be the model for future venues."
"We are delighted to have booked Seal as the grand opening performer in the new WaMu Theater on Friday, November 3rd!" said Alex Kochan, vice president of AEG Live's northwest regional office. "Our goal for WaMu Theater is to bring the industry's most popular and successful performers to this world-class showplace. By securing Seal, followed the next evening, November 4th, by Van Morrison, we have already set the bar high for WaMu Theater." The on-sale date for tickets will be announced shortly.
A percentage of proceeds generated at Qwest Field Event Center are paid to the Common School Fund benefiting State-wide K-12 education initiatives. Since 2002, nearly $700,000 has been contributed from the Event Center to the Common School Fund. For more information on the Common School Fund visit http://www.stadium.org/publicPermanent.asp.
FGI currently hosts over 300 events in the Qwest Field Event Center on a year round basis ranging from large scale consumer events to community programs. More than 1.2 million people visit the Qwest Field Event Center annually. It is located adjacent to Qwest Field, home of the Seattle Seahawks.
About Washington Mutual
Washington Mutual, through its subsidiaries, is one of the nation's leading consumer and small business banks. At June 30, 2006, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries had assets of $350.70 billion. The company has a history dating back to 1889 and its subsidiary banks currently operate more than 2,600 consumer and small business banking stores throughout the nation. Washington Mutual's press releases are available at www.wamunewsroom.com.
About First & Goal Inc. (FGI)
FGI was formed by Paul Allen in 1997 after voters in Washington State approved the construction of a new football/soccer stadium and adjoining event center on the site of the former Kingdome. FGI was formed to serve as the developer and operator of Qwest Field and Qwest Field Event Center. Qwest Field is home to the NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks and the Seattle Sounders Soccer Club. The stadium and event center are owned by the Washington State Public Stadium Authority and is leased to FGI, who has responsibility to operate and maintain the complex. Visit www.qwestfield.com for more information.