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Approval for first international tour since lockdown

Cheap Trick have been added as the latest headliner for Under the Southern Stars (UTSS), Australia’s first concert series featuring international artists since the lockdown of March 2020.

Promoted by Andrew McManus’s One World Entertainment, UTSS comprises 11 shows across Australia in April and May. Joining Cheap Trick are two other American rock bands, Stone Temple Pilots and Bush, with the three acting as rotating headliners across the tour.

The shows, which have been approved by the national border force commissioner, will take place in partnership with local and state authorities, who have signed off on the strict Covid-19 regulations that will allow the bands into and across Australia.

1World Entertainment will also bring Kiss to Australia in November, with the band playing their final-ever Australian shows as part of the End of the Road tour.

Cheap Trick replace US band Live, who pulled out of the arena tour as a result of scheduling conflicts. Other performers will include local acts Rose Tattoo and Electric Mary.

“Under the Southern Stars ’21 will be part of history”

“I’m so proud of my team in securing exemption from the commission of border control and thankful to all the captains of industry, ministers, lords mayor and the South Australian premier for their letters of support,” comments McManus. “We are very excited to now be able to announce Cheap Trick as an addition to the line-up; it’s a shame Live’s schedule won’t permit the new time frame, yet I am sure this triple bill will rock our UTSS audiences to the core.

“Being the first live-on-stage international tour, we are aware the eyes of the world will be on us championing the re-opening of live international touring, not only in Australia but globally. Under the Southern Stars ’21 will be part of history. I urge fans to get in quickly, and applaud all for supporting live music and the whole entertainment sector so badly damaged by Covid.”

Tickets start at around A$130 (US$100) and are available via the UTSS website.

The dates and locations for Under the Southern Stars are:

Under the Southern Stars tour dates


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Promoter Andrew McManus escapes jail term

An Australian concert promoter who confessed to attempting to pervert the course of justice, which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years’ jail time, has escaped a prison sentence.

One World Entertainment founder Andrew McManus – who in August admitted the charge, which concerned the disputed ownership of a suitcase containing A$702,000 in cash – was on Friday sentenced to 20 months in prison, but will serve his sentence in the community, according to Sydney Morning Herald’s Patrick Begley.

Sydney district court judge Mark Williams ruled McManus had shown remorse for the crime and is unlikely to offend again.

McManus, who has promoted shows by major acts including Kiss, Fleetwood Mac, Aerosmith, Whitney Houston and The Beach Boys in Australia and New Zealand, was one of five people arrested in September following the discovery of the suitcase in a room at the Hilton Hotel in Sydney in 2011. In 2012 he told police the cash related to a business deal he had arranged for Owen Hanson, a “very good friend of a friend”, to secure a ZZ Top tour, but that he needed it back to fund a Lenny Kravitz tour. “In essence, I delivered back 700 grand I now need to borrow it again,” he said. “As quickly as possible.”

McManus said he lied about the source of the money, traced by police to an international drugs syndicate, in return for an underworld loan to fund a Lenny Kravitz tour

While McManus eventually claimed the money was his – “It’s not the proceeds of crime, it’s the proceeds of Andrew McManus… I gave someone 700 large, and you’ve found someone with 700 large. It’s my 700 large,” he said – police were previously told the occupant of the Hilton room, Sean Carolan, was minding it for his business partner, peptide entrepreneur Owen Hanson Jnr, and then that Hanson was investing it in Carolan’s weight-loss company.

McManus told the court on Friday he lied about the source of the money – which police traced to an international drugs syndicate – in return for an underworld loan to fund the Kravitz shows. At the time, he said, he was depressed and hooked on drink and drugs.

The leader of the drug ring, American Owen ‘O-Dog’ Hanson, was sentenced to 20 years in prison earlier this year.


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Final Raggamuffin Festival postponed

The tenth Raggamuffin Music Festival has been postponed until November amid weak ticket sales and “an extremely busy events market in Auckland”.

The news was announced on Friday by festival promoter Andrew McManus, of Melbourne-based One World Entertainment, just over a week before the reggae and hip-hop festival was due to kick off.

McManus announced last month that the tenth Raggamuffin, scheduled for 18 February at Auckland’s Trusts Arena (4,901-cap.), would be its last. Headliners are Six60, Shaggy and The Wailers with Julian Marley.

“Ticket sales for the festival have slowed in recent weeks and appear to have been impacted by various factors, including an announcement that train services will now not be available on the event date due to track work being done,” says McManus.

“Ticket sales for the festival have slowed in recent weeks and appear to have been impacted by various factors”

“Patron comfort, security and the importance of protecting local suppliers is paramount and was at the forefront of this decision. With these factors in mind we have no option but to postpone Raggamuffin X to November 2017.

“This will give us time to work through campaigns and the overall success of the project, both in New Zealand and for associated concerts in Australia.”

McManus faces up to 14 years in prison after pleading guilty last August to perverting the course of justice. He will be sentenced in March.


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