began selling tickets for its Thursday morning, and by the end of the day had sold a record-breaking 110,000.
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Six concerts completely sold out (meaning both pavilion and lawn seating), including Colbie Caillat and Gavin Degraw; Santana; both James Taylor shows and both Train shows.
Pavilion seats sold out for Earth, Wind & Fire; Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers; Sarah McLachlan; Idina Menzel; and Duran Duran.
"The season includes 50 artists who have never been to Ravinia before," said Ravinia Communications Director Nick Pullia in a statement. "That has attracted great attention, and could bring us new audiences as well."
Patch reader Jennie Moore commented on Patch's Facebook page that she was waiting for over two hours Thursday morning, but logged off because she had to go to work.
According to Ravinia, the festival's website maintained about 9,000 users consistently throughout the day. Ravinia's web host tripled its server capacity to improve the site's speed.
"It was akin to open-heart surgery,” Pullia said, “We tripled our space and combed our code to make sure there were no other issues slowing things down, all without interrupting the sales flow."
Originally, Ravinia's website warned customers they'd have to wait 30 minutes or more; however, many waited for hours. For some, the wait ended with the frustrating news that the show they wanted to buy tickets for was sold out.
"I have been trying for SIX hours," wrote Esther Spaeth Kelly on Ravinia's Facebook page. "James Taylor and Train have completely sold out for the Saturday shows on the lawn. Great."
Pulia apologized in a statement to Ravinia customers.
"I do apologize to anyone who had to wait a long time to purchase tickets," Pulia said. "I do hope you were able to get the tickets you wanted."