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Riot erupts after Lil Baby cancels headline set

A riot erupted at a hip-hop festival in Canada after rapper Lil Baby abruptly cancelled his headline performance due to illness.

The US artist had been due to close the two-day Breakout Festival at Vancouver’s 7,000-cap PNE Amphitheatre on 18 August, but pulled his set at the 11th hour, with organisers tweeting he was “too sick to perform”.

According to police, the announcement sparked fights among concert-goers inside and outside the venue, with seven people arrested for breach of the peace and “likely thousands of dollars” caused in property damage.

“Vancouver Police officers were already inside the venue and providing extra security when several hundred people began fighting and destroying property in the Amphitheatre, on the PNE grounds, and in the surrounding neighbourhood,” says constable Tania Visintin. “Dozens of extra officers were redeployed from other areas of the city to restore order, with some officers having bottles and other objects thrown at them.”

A criminal investigation into the disorder has now been launched.

“We will pursue criminal charges against people who participated in this violence and destruction”

“We will conduct a full and thorough investigation into the actions of anyone who destroyed property, put concert-goers in danger, or committed other criminal acts,” adds Visintin. “Though this investigation will take time, we will pursue criminal charges against people who participated in this violence and destruction.”

Artists including Polo G, Quavo & Takeoff and Saturday night headliner Trippie Red had performed at the event over the weekend. Breakout Festival had previously taken place in 2018 and 2019.

“Last night’s end to the 2022 Breakout Festival resulted in the worst case scenario of disappointment due to Sunday’s final performer cancelling and we want to apologise to everyone who peacefully left the venue, as well as the venue staff and the Hastings-Sunrise neighbourhood for the way Breakout 2022 ended,” says a statement from organisers.

“We do not condone violence or destruction of property and are utterly disappointed with the way some of our patrons acted at this year’s event. Safety of our guests and venue staff is our number one concern. We did everything to make Breakout a unique and enjoyable experience for Vancouver’s rap fans.

“We want our audience to know we did everything in our power to make every festival a success and we want to thank every loyal fan and all of the staff who attended the events over the years. Stay tuned for information and details regarding partial refunds for two-day and Sunday Breakout 2022 ticket-holders.”

 


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TFA promotes Olivia Ootes to VP of operations

Canadian talent agency The Feldman Agency (TFA) has announced the promotion of Olivia Ootes from director to vice president of operations.

In her new role, Ootes continues to work closely with senior staff on company structure, as well as overseeing the administration of day-to-day operations, including staffing, IT, budgeting and the intern programme.

Ootes has worked at TFA for over 20 years, joining the company’s Toronto office as a junior coordinator in 1998. She moves from the position of director of operations, which she held for five years.

Alongside agent and senior vice president, Vinny Cinquemani, Ootes works directly with leading Canadian artists including Bryan Adams, Burton Cummings, Michael Bublé and David Foster.

“The commitment to growing careers internally, as well the quality of work happening here, has made TFA one of the most reputable companies in the industry”

“Olivia and I have worked closely together for many years and she has been a key player in the development and career of many of Canada’s premiere artists,” says Cinquemani.

Ootes comments: “I am honoured to move into this increased leadership position at TFA, which has been a supportive and encouraging home to me. The commitment to growing careers internally, as well the quality of work happening here, has made TFA one of the most reputable companies in the industry.”

Talent agency and management group TFA has over 40 years experience in the entertainment business, representing artists including Diana Krall, Carly Rae Jepsen, Badbadnotgood and Jann Arden. TFA has offices in both Toronto and Vancouver.

 


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Eventbrite acquires Canadian ticketer Picatic

Eventbrite has announced it has acquired Vancouver-based ticketing and event registration platform Picatic. The deal is the latest in a busy twelve months for the global ticketing platform, which has already seen the acquisition of Dutch ticketers Ticketscript, US-based Ticketfly and the Spanish Ticketea.

Built on the idea of empowering event creators, Picatic has previously made its name through its “elegantly simple” software. Jayesh Parmar, CEO and co-founder, speaks passionately about events and the community they create. “Events are deeply rooted in our company’s DNA and we share the same passion for live experiences as the team at Eventbrite,” he says.

“Joining forces brings tremendous value to our loyal customers, who will now benefit from Eventbrite’s powerful platform. We’re excited to share our talented development community and have a broader impact in the Canadian market and beyond.”

“We are particularly inspired by [Picatic’s] commitment to empowering purpose-driven creators to drive positive change in their communities”

With employees in Calgary, Toronto and Montreal, the acquisition will further expand Eventbrite’s Canadian offering. Parmar will join the ticketing giant’s team to continue leading Picatic operations in Vancouver.

Julia Hartz, CEO and co-founder of Eventbrite, has commented on the deal, saying the two ticketing platforms share the same passion for live experiences. “We are particularly inspired by [Picatic’s] commitment to empowering purpose-driven creators to drive positive change in their communities,” she adds.

“Eventbrite has a long-standing commitment to Canada. Vancouver is emerging as a lively tech hub, full of world-class talent and innovative companies, and we feel a strong connection to it as a technology and cultural centre.

“We look forward to continuing to expand our local team and empowering our creators in this vibrant market.”

 


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