ICYMI, the RnB / Neo-Soul / Hip-Hop musical extravaganza that is Soulfest was cancelled earlier this morning, with festival organisers citing poor ticket sales as the reason.
“It is with a heavy heart and great regret that Soulfest International advises that it has become necessary to cancel Soulfest and the subsequent sideshows, due to poor ticket sales,” they wrote, in messages posted to both Facebook and www.soulfest.com.au.
“Despite a stellar line-up of artists and the best promotional endeavours on Soulfest’s behalf, the event has simply not received the support via ticket sales, and the financial loss that would be incurred by the event if it were to go ahead as planned would be devastating.”
Which would be all well and good – well, not *good*, but a perfectly valid reason for cancelling a festival one week out – but Soulfest are getting an absolute flogging on Facebook for claiming “poor ticket sales” is the reason.
“Really? Poor ticket sales? Please,” wrote Jana N’racci on Soulfest’s Facebook post. “That’s a slap in the face. At lease provide us with a legitimate reason as opposed to a contrived media statement. I had emailed you directly, as well as Melbourne promoters, consistently asking for extra tickets for friends coming from overseas. I was repeatedly told that the event was sold out, “at capacity,” and sold more than 3 times the amount of tickets last year.“
At the time of writing, N’racci’s post has been liked 501 times. And – YOU know, WE know – the number of likes on a comment is not a measure of its value (*coughs, checks Pedestrian‘s comments, inhales vodka*), it *is* an indicator on how many other people are similarly pissed at the “poor ticket sales” reason: at least 501.
SOULFEST 2015 CANCELLEDIt is with a heavy heart and great regret that Soulfest International advises that it has…
A number of comments on both Facebook and Twitter back this theory up:
“Agree I also looked for extra tickets!!!!!!” wrote Malinda Savage, while Mary Stella Ngomamiti wrote: “Yep! I was told [it was] sold out too.”
Twitter was a similar story:
@damnthattaylor same! I call bullshit! ??
— Lozzy. (@LaydeeLala__) October 13, 2015
We’ve reached out to both Soulfest and Eventopia (the ticketing platform), but no luck yet – and TBH, we’re not expecting it from Soulfest.
Soulfest Asia, on the other hand, have issued a snarky release that, as Soulfest International Australia stuffed up, they’ll have to cancel their shows, too.
“Due to Soulfest International Australia’s inability to fulfil its commitments to Soulfest Asia, Malaysia‘s headliners, Mary J Blige, Jhene Aiko, De La Soul and Talib Kweli will not be making their way to Soulfest Asia,” they said.
“We at Soulnation Asia have fulfilled all obligations and commitments to the acts, including obtaining the proper licensing and permits.”
They’ve also quoted a spokesperson for Soulfest International Australia as saying: “We are very saddened by the inability of our company to secure the headline artists for Soulfest Asia as originally planned and have deprived fans of the festival line up that was promised — we apologise for this chain of events.”
Soulfest Asia is looking at tentatively rescheduling the tour to December 2015, but if you just wanna sit in a dark room and cry and listen to Mary J Blige / Jill Scott on repeat, that’s cool.