Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Reporter
South Africa’s Cassper Nyovest, NaakMusiQ and Amaroto who were supposed to perform in Bulawayo on Sunday did not do so after police apparently shut the gig down.
Dubbed the Sunday Summer “Big Boys Party”, the SA acts were supposed to share the stage with locals POY, King 98 and Noreen Moira alongside local DJs.
As the show kicked off at about 6PM, there were complaints from residents around Khumalo Hockey Stadium, such as former Sports and Arts Minister, David Coltart who complained about the noise levels and abuse of stadia.
Coltart tweeted and tagged Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Kirsty Coventry saying: “What is going on Kirsty Coventry? It is Sunday night in Bulawayo and there is a music concert going on at the Bulawayo Hockey Stadium as I write. Why is the Stadium being used like this? This is what happened before I became Minister and it was ruined. This must stop!”
However, the action was happening at the stadium’s car park, away from the hockey fields that were damaged during previous shows held there.
The show had started at high octane with local DJs rocking the stage, keeping the crowd entertained with a blend of house, hip-hop and Amapiano music.
But, at around 10PM, the power on the stage was switched off and police details were observed walking around the stage. Thereafter, there seemed to be discussions backstage between them and some people who looked like event organisers.
After some time, the stage lights went on and when it seemed like the show was going on, the power was switched off again. Electricians were seen making frantic efforts to fix the problem.
Meanwhile, the show organisers had two headaches, one of police wanting to stop the show and power outages on stage.
Patient revellers waited as well as the South African stars who were already at the venue, housed in the VVIP section.
An hour passed and still, there was nothing!
At this point, police were making rounds around the venue telling people to go home as the show had been shut down because of curfew regulations. Curfew is between midnight and 6AM.
NaakMusiQ who was disappointed was spotted taking pictures with fans from the car that was escorting him.
Revellers quizzed why authorities allowed the SA artistes into the country only to bar them from performing.
“We bought VVIP tickets as we thought everything was above board. They (police) could have just told organisers that the show wasn’t going to happen because of curfew, Covid-19 regulations and all.
“So Cassper and Amaroto came to the country for nothing and our money is gone just like that,” said one Sifiso Sibanda.
Another sad reveller asked if they would get refunded.
“We want to know what will happen to the tickets we bought since the show didn’t happen. Are they going to give us refunds or what? We paid US$20 and what happens now since we didn’t see the artistes,” said the reveller who identified himself as Godwin.
The cheapest ticket was US$20 and the most expensive was US$100.
Show organiser, Mduduzi Mdlongwa of 3D Events said: “The show was shut down because we had gone beyond the stipulated hours. The show was cleared as per the hours given under Covid-19.”
He said they would sit down with their principals and map a way forward with regards to refunds.
The party did not stop for Cassper Nyovest who was spotted at The Boundary afterwards. Some revellers went to BAC Leisure to end their night.
Perhaps promoters need to take a leaf from the Major League DJs show held last year at SmokeHouse where the twins were on stage at 7PM and by 9PM, the show was over. This beat the curfew time and people were able to go home in time.
It is high time that show organisers adjust their times and start holding shows in the afternoon so that they end well before set times. This also gives room for after parties where bars and night clubs can also benefit, rather than unnecessarily holding people at ransom until wee hours of the morning.
Organisers had also said the show will start in the afternoon so as to beat times, but by 10PM, the main acts had not got on stage, which was another challenge.
Also, the neighbourhood where the Hockey Stadium is situated had long complained about shows being held there. The last show that was held there was that of Alick Macheso and Clement Magwaza in 2018 and at that time, residents complained about the noise. – @bonganinkunzi
Article Source: The Chronicle