R Kelly keeps wish list tight

2013-03-10 10:00

As South African music lovers count down to US R&B singer-songwriter R Kelly’s two-city tour next week, his list of requests have shown no traces of extravagance – but he insists on “no pork”.

The catering rider delivered by his management belies his superstar status and is stripped of any great excess.

At 7pm, before he gets on stage, the I Believe I Can Fly and I Wish hit maker will dine on grilled chicken breast and fresh white fish with brown rice, broiled tomatoes and blanched asparagus.

His dressing room has to be large enough to accommodate up to 10 people and contain two “clean and fresh” couches that can sit four comfortably.

In addition, he needs 24 new shower towels, and 24 new, black, stage hand towels.

To drink, he has ordered coffee and tea, with liquid creamer, powdered creamer, raw sugar, honey and real lemon with a knife.

He also asked for two large bags of ground Papa Nicholas decaffeinated hazelnut or French vanilla ground coffee plus a box of throat coat tea.

Cold drinks include sugar-free Red Bull, six bottles of Gatorade, six cans of Coke and 12 bottles of water at room temperature.

Snacks include kosher dill pickles, a deli and cheese platter and fresh fruits, including apples, oranges and strawberries.

R Kelly brings eight band members and six singers and dancers for his show.

His fear of flying is well documented – he even sings about it – but he appears willing to endure the 18-hour flight to South Africa.

He has insisted on being driven to his concert in Durban, though.

Two super luxury buses are on standby.

During his six-day trip, he will do some charity work with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Foundation and spend some time at an orphanage in Alexandra, north of Johannesburg.

In KwaZulu-Natal, he will visit King Goodwill Zwelithini.

Concert promoter Sabata Lechema of Afropulse Entertainment promised an “exceptional” show.

“It will be a powerful show. His last two appearances in South Africa were on a small scale (at the Africa Fashion Week and Sun City Superbowl in 2009 and then at the opening ceremony of the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup).

“But his personal wish has been to host a full show in Joburg and now it’s happening.”

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