1 World cancellation baffles ticket-holders, artistes

No explanation from event organisers, who only denied that artistes were not booked
Published: 4:03 AM, September 20, 2013
Updated: 4:00 AM, September 21, 2013
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SINGAPORE — Questions remain on the mysterious eleventh-hour cancellation of the 1 World Music Festival — which was to have kicked off today, featuring international acts like Moby, Snoop Dogg and Far East Movement — with the event organisers unresponsive to repeated calls since their brief and vague press statement on Wednesday night.

And not only were ticket-holders — some of whom were flying here for the event — left hanging by the abrupt canning, it appeared that the performers and record labels were left in the dark till late too.

In the only comments by the organisers on the matter yesterday, Retfar Entertainment — a sister company of events and concert promoter Retfar Entertainment of Australia — said on a blog about the event: “There are rumours floating that none of the artistes were confirmed. That is not true.”

The blog entry also provided pictures and links — to the Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages of seven of the acts confirming they were coming — to show that “our artistes were indeed booked already”.

The company, a newcomer to the market here, added: “We understand the situation and will release a proper statement as soon as possible.”

For such events, an arts entertainment licence would be needed, which the Media Development Authority grants. TODAY understands that the abrupt cancellation was not over any licensing issue.

There also did not appear to be hiccups with the venue booking for the Marina Barrage Central Court and water playground areas at the ground level, as well as selected areas of the green roof.

About five hours after Retfar said, at around 8pm on Wednesday, that the two-day gig would be cancelled due to “unforeseen circumstances”, one of the artistes involved, Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, tweeted: “Does anyone know why? They havnt (sic) really explained it to me yet.”

Veteran Singaporean DJ Aldrin Quek, who was slated to spin tomorrow, told TODAY he got an email about the cancellation only on Wednesday night.

“It’s shocking news that they pulled the event at such a last minute. They didn’t give us any details aside from what was (officially) announced.”

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