Matheos Viktor Messakh , THE JAKARTA POST , JAKARTA | Wed, 02/11/2009 9:08 AM | Headlines
After two days of speculation, fans in Indonesia had to swallow the bitter truth that pop superstar Rihanna had cancelled her concert here for the second time, following reports that she had accused longtime boyfriend Chris Brown of assault.
Promoter ShowMaster told a press conference late Tuesday that it had held a teleconference with Rihanna’s management to confirm the cancellation.
“We spoke to Tony Goldring of the William Morris Agency [WMA] on Monday at 11:50 p.m. [Jakarta time],” said promoter Troy Reza Warokka.
“The main cause of the cancellation was related to Sunday night’s incident.
“What happened to Rihanna could happen to anybody else. The incident was unexpected.”
Brown had been slated to perform at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday night, but was instead processed by the police on a charge connected to an alleged assault on a woman, reportedly identified as his girlfriend Rihanna, the 21-year-old pop princess.
Both Rihanna and Brown pulled out of the Grammys hours before Sunday’s telecast.
The Los Angeles Times, citing law enforcement officials close to the case and other sources it did not name, reported that Rihanna told police that Brown had hurt her the night before the Grammy Awards.
Rihanna, a Barbados-born singer, stormed the international music charts and radio playlists with her single “Umbrella”. Her other popular hits include “Take A Bow”, “S.O.S”, “Don’t Stop the Music” and “Disturbia”.
Troy said disappointed fans could reclaim their money at ticket boxes from Thursday.
“We are very disappointed [with the cancellation] but that’s a business consequence,” he said.
Troy said that Rihanna’s management, through WMA vice president of business affairs Ruth Estrada, had offered “to reschedule the performance for the future”.
“That’s their offer, but we must first evaluate it,” he said.
Cell phone operator AXIS, the main sponsor of the concert, said in a press statement, “Regretfully, AXIS has to announce that Rihanna Live in Concert, which was slated for Thursday, has to be postponed for the second time.”
Rihanna had been scheduled to perform in Jakarta on Nov. 14, 2008. But the Grammy-award winning singer called off the show over security fears after the Australian government issued a travel warning for Indonesia following the executions of the three Bali bombers.
Despite higher ticket prices, fans were still enthusiastic to grab them. The organizers had set the lowest ticket price, for Festival class, at Rp 1.25 million (US$ 112) each, higher than November’s Rp 750,000. The prices for the Tribune and VIP classes remained unchanged from last year’s Rp 2 million and Rp 2.5 million, respectively.
On Feb. 13, Rihanna also cancelled her concert in Kuala Lumpur.
Her planned concert there drew negative publicity after organizers said she would shun skimpy outfits to conform with the Muslim-majority country’s strict rules on performers’ dress.