Former Norva owner talks about selling to AEG Live

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – It’s his first interview since the news broke. One of the Norva’s long-time owners, Bill Reid, sat down with 10 On Your Side Thursday to talk about the sale of Hampton Roads’ favorite music venue.

On Wednesday, AEG Live, a Los Angeles-based company, announced their purchase of the Norva and the intent to make it their mid-Atlantic regional office. It’s a decision Reid says will benefit the city of Norfolk, and especially concert-goers, for years to come.

“It’s all about striving for improvement, making it better, and everyday I come in here, I look and I drive my staff crazy because I say, ‘we can do this better,’” Reid said. “If we can make a difference and create a wonderful setting and people have great memories and they have a great time when they’re here and they go home happy, then I feel like we’ve accomplished something.”

The Norva will now serve as a critical component of AEG’s operations for touring and more. But that touring component alone could mean a lot for Hampton Roads.

“We now can get ahead of the touring curve, that means we can work faster and quicker and more efficiently, and if we do that, we can take advantage of that,” Reid said. “They do world tours: Bon Jovi, Taylor Swift and Kenny Chesney, so who knows.”

Photos: Behind the scenes at The Norva

Reid took 10 On Your Side on a tour around the place so many in Hampton Roads have fond memories of. The behind the scenes areas have made some unforgettable musicians, like PRINCE and James Brown, fall in love with the Norva, too. It’s a package deal that made several music companies make offers for the venue. But the Norva resisted selling, until AEG Live came their way.

Some have asked if, Reid and his business partner sold the venue for the money, but he says, after 14 years of ownership, this deal was more about the right fit.

“AEG is the best entertainment company in the world, and to partner with them, for me, it’s a dream come true,” he said.

Reid said he’s proud of what he and his business partner have already accomplished with the Norva, being named the number one music venue in America by the readers of Rolling Stone magazine in 2013. And all of his staff is staying on. They’re all excited about what’s to come.

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