An event that had already been attracting attention for the wrong reasons, Shanghai's DWP Festival ended in controversy last night (Sun 18) as headline act Nicki Minaj
reportedly refused to take the stage, leaving many fans heartbroken, angry and confused.
Okay, so here's what happened: DWP (Djakarta Warehouse Project) is an Indonesian music festival brand. An event was held in Shanghai over the weekend (Sat 17-Sun 18) under the DWP name which was initially snubbed as unofficial by DWP International, but then at the last minute was deemed official
by DWP China's official Weibo. (see the images below). Make sense? Cool.
Image: DWP China via Weibo
Nicki Minaj was rumoured to be headlining on Sunday night with a 90-minute set and despite some doubts, she actually showed up. However, she did not perform. DJ Snake was also announced for the festival but did not play. Another big-name booking, Luis Fonsi, did.
While there has been no official reason as to why she didn't take the stage, some are saying it's down to her being misled about the event, being promised a crowd of 8,000 people, when in reality there was less than 1,000 in attendance. Whether there were also issues with payment (some sources claim Minaj was allegedly offered 3 million USD for the performance) remains to be seen.
Following the debacle, Minaj recorded a video
apologising to fans and promising to be back in Shanghai again with a better partner, in what we assume was a small dig at DWP China. Fans were left confused and frustrated, with many waiting several hours to see the star in action.
'We waited for over two hours after the last act and they told us she had problems with her voice, so she wasn't gonna perform' one attendee told Time Out Shanghai.
'Then when we were about to leave, they told us she would perform so we ran back to the stage. Then they said there are sound issues so she again couldn't perform. She didn't come out at all. Some people flew all the way from Chongqing and Chengdu to see her and were crying.'
Image: DWP China via Weibo
The image above is an official statement released earlier today by DWP China regarding a refund policy for people who waited to see Minaj last night. See a translation below:
DWP CHINA took place in 1H at National Exhibition and Convention Center on Nov. 18, 2018.
During the performance, guest performer Nicki Minaj couldn’t arrive on time, as a result, the show was delayed considerably. After Ms. Minaj’s arrival, despite fans' requests and event organisers' two-hour negotiations, Ms. Minaj refused to perform without providing a plausible reason. Eventually, her manager went on stage and declared unilaterally the premature end of the whole performance. We strongly criticise their behaviour and we would like to apologise to our audience.
The event organiser has therefore decided that all full-price tickets bought through official channels (Damai APP, Damai web, Maoyan APP, 247tickets and Yongle tickets) will be fully refunded. Attendees should keep the physical ticket and the proof of purchase including their name, ID number, phone number and booking number. Address them to the relevant ticketing platform and the postage fee will be borne by the receiver. The fund will be returned to the account used for purchasing if the purchase proof meets the refund condition. The refund will be processed between Nov 26 and Nov 28, between 10am and 5pm.
Our sincere apology to everyone who came to watch the performance!