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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

Queen of J-pop Namie Amuro cancels Singapore gig

Queen of J-pop Namie Amuro's gig in Singapore is cancelled, with refunds for purchased tickets being arranged
The Straits Times - April 22, 2013
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Queen of J-pop Namie Amuro cancels Singapore gig

By Jan Lee

After a week of he-said-she-said uncertainty, it is official: Japanese pop superstar Namie Amuro has cancelled her concert here scheduled for next Friday.

The concert's local promoter Midas Promotions said on its Facebook page that its negotiations with the Japanese organisers ended on Thursday evening after it received a legal letter from Japan saying there is "no possibility to hold the show".

In a subsequent e-mail statement to the media, a Midas spokesman said it "was looking forward to a great show and is greatly disappointed for the fans by this decision".

At press time, neither Midas nor ticketing agent Sistic could provide details of refunds for fans who had already bought tickets to the concert.

A statement on Sistic's website read: "All ticket-holders will be fully reimbursed for the value of their tickets. Anyone holding tickets to the show must retain their original tickets in order to receive a refund. The full details and process for a refund are being finalised."

For about a week before the confirmation of the cancellation, Sistic was still selling tickets to the gig despite Amuro's official website stating that the concert had been called off due to "local technical reasons".

Ms Evonne Ng, 28, a web designer and blogger, had bought three tickets in the priciest category, at $288 each, to the concert.

"I'd been waiting for her to come for years. The only concert I am willing to fork out $300 a ticket for would be Namie Amuro's," said Ms Ng, who has been a fan of the singer since she was a teenager.

The most upsetting thing for her is that she would have flown overseas to see the 35-year-old singer perform if the Singapore stop had not been included in her Asia tour.

"If Singapore had not been in her tour itinerary, I would have organised a trip to Japan or Taiwan for her concert."

The stop in Singapore at the Singapore Indoor Stadium would have been the final leg of Amuro's Asia tour, which celebrates her 20th year in showbiz and included concerts in Taiwan in February and Hong Kong last month.

Another fan, blogger Trixy Mok, 23, would also have travelled to watch Amuro in concert.

"I would have organised a trip to Hong Kong to catch her live," she said.

Based on comments left on Midas' Facebook page, quite a number of fans seem to think that the concert has been cancelled because of poor ticket sales.

Ms Mok said: "I don't think the concert was well promoted. If L'Arc-en-Ciel can perform to a good crowd at the Indoor Stadium, then Namie can too. A lot of people on my blog said that they didn't know she was coming until it was announced that the concert was cancelled.

"I think most Japanese acts don't get proper promotion here. When I go out and see the big screens in shopping malls, it seems that Korean pop gets more promotion."

L'Arc-en-Ciel are a veteran Japanese rock band who performed in Singapore for the first time in April last year to a 6,800-strong audience.

Ms Mok is pessimistic that she will get to see Amuro perform in Singapore. In fact, she does not think any of her labelmates from the record company Avex, including popular singers Kumi Koda and Ayumi Hamasaki, will perform here either.

"I think there's very little chance of any of the Avex artistes coming to Singapore in the future."

janlee@sph.com.sg

 

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