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Fatal stampede causes chaos at Venezuelan concert

A free concert held at Caracas’ Francisco de Miranda park on Saturday (9 November) resulted in tragedy, as a stampede left up to three dead and dozens injured.

Police estimated that 8,000 people – the vast majority minors – arrived to see the concert by Venezuelan trap artist Neutro Shorty, real name Liomar Acosta.

According to many reports, three minors were killed in the stampede. Other sources put the death toll at one, whereas online Venezuela TV channel VPI TV reports that four were killed.

Fans attempted “to climb over the entry barriers, which gave way, causing the stampede,” Miguel Balza, the coordinator of civil protection in the metropolitan area of Caracas told reporters at the AFP.

Fans attempted “to climb over the entry barriers, which gave way, causing the stampede”

The concert was later moved to an adjacent park. Speaking from the stage, the trap artist announced: “I didn’t come here to lie to you, or to cause any trouble. I came here to sing, and for free. What is going on is no good. Kids are fainting. I feel sick when I see their faces. I don’t want this to carry on.”

An investigation has launched into the incident. Neither the concert organiser or park authorities have claimed responsibility for the stampede.

A barricade collapse caused non-fatal issues at another live music event over the weekend. Three fans were hospitalised after sustaining minor injuries when an entry barrier collapsed at Travis Scott’s Astroworld festival in Houston on Saturday, prompting a stampede.

No serious injuries or fatalities were reported.

 


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Trapeze Bar sacks GM over bashment comments

Miroma Leisure, owner and operator of east London’s Trapeze Bar, has fired the venue’s general manager for violating its “beliefs and values” by making comments critical of bashment and trap music.

It came to light earlier this week that a fundraiser for the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire would no longer be taking place at the 480-cap. venue after Jordan Wells said Trapeze does “not entertain” bashment and trap music – genres he called “crap” – because they attract a “poor quality-demographic and result in problems”. Haqiqi Events, the promoter of the 29 June show, accused Wells of racism.

At the time, Miroma called the comments “unsolicited opinions” and said it would undertake “a full investigation of the matter”.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Mimroma said Wells has now been let go.

The full statement is below:

The owners of Trapeze can confirm that, following a full investigation, the employee involved has had his contract terminated with immediate effect.

The conduct of the employee does not represent our company’s values and beliefs.

As a gesture of goodwill, Trapeze Bar has donated £2,000 to the British Red Cross London fire relief fund, which has been coordinating efforts to support the residents and neighbours, effectively doubling the target amount [£1,000] set by the event.

Wells took over as GM of Trapeze in March 2016. Prior to joining Miroma, he was GM at Novus Leisure, which operates 47 bars and nightclubs across the UK.

 


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London venue in racism row over axed Grenfell benefit

An east London bar and music venue has said it will positively discriminate to increase the diversity of its programming after the organiser of a fundraiser for the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire was told its event would attract a “poor-quality demographic”.

Haqiqi Events, the London-based event planner behind the 29 June Cxlture show, postponed the event after being told by Jordan Wells, general manager of the 480-cap. Trapeze Bar (pictured), that the bashment and trap music artists it had booked are “crap”, and that the venue does “not entertain [these genres] as they attract [a] poor-quality demographic and result in problems”.

After posting a screenshot of Wells’s email online, Haqiqi postponed the event, which aimed to raise £1,000, saying it is “not associating with a business like this”. The company also accused Trapeze and owner Miroma Leisure of “racism”.

Haqiqi founder Taireen Hussain says the event will be rescheduled.

The row has echoes of the ongoing controversy over form 696, a risk-assessment form critics say discriminates against primarily black musical styles such as grime, garage and bashment.

“We have spoken with the promoters and offered them another date of their choice and offered to double the money raised on the night for Grenfell”

In a statement, Miroma washed its hands of the “unsolicited opinions from an employee of ours” and offered to double the amount raised by should Haqiqi wish to keep Cxlture at Trapeze.

“The owners of Trapeze apologise for the recent actions and opinions expressed by the Trapeze general manager,” it reads. “Trapeze [is] committed to a policy of welcoming all guests into the venue and does not discriminate in terms of race, age, colour, sex or national origin. The management team of Miroma Leisure, owners of Trapeze, are undertaking a full investigation of the matter and will take affirmative action following the outcome. We have spoken with the promoters and offered them another date of their choice and offered to double the money raised on the night for Grenfell as a gesture of goodwill.

“We plan to assist the promoters to raise awareness of the new date. We will be proud to announce the new date in due course and do everything possible to make the event a resounding success.”

Hussain said he “acknowledges” the apology but suggests the venue should make a “heavy donation” (emphasis his) to the victims of the fire. “Only then can we accept your apology on their behalf, but not before.”

 


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