R65m lost on failed festival

2014-09-21 01:00

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The City of Tshwane spent R65?million on what would have been its bash of the year, the TribeOne Festival.

Of that, R10?million alone was spent on US pop star Nicki Minaj’s non-refundable appearance fee.

Her army of fans, nicknamed The Barbz, are devastated, but Minaj is being “really nice” about the cancellation of the festival, which was due to be held next weekend.

The hefty performance fee charged by Minaj?–?and paid for with funds from the City of Tshwane, which forked out R25?million to pay artists, with a further R40?million on infrastructure?–?has, in all likelihood, gone down the drain after the festival was cancelled this week, according to sources.

Artists claim money paid by promoters as they could have been earning that amount elsewhere?–?and their names are sullied when events are cancelled.

The city is taking legal action to try and force TribeOne to go ahead with the concert, initiated?–?according to TribeOne?–?by Sony Music Entertainment SA, which has been left with egg on its face.

Two of TribeOne’s directors are local Sony bosses and, according to the artist contracts, Sony was responsible for paying the artists.

Minaj is one of the more than 150 artists who was going to perform at the inaugural three-day concert on an unserviced patch of land in Cullinan, east of Pretoria. The concert was billed as “Africa’s biggest music festival”.

» Get City Press newspaper for the full story.

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