Madiba tribute gigs a big flop
Gala dinner and concert 'disorganised'
THE festivities dedicated to ailing former statesman Nelson Mandela last weekend have been described as haphazard and disorganised by those who took part.
Last Friday night, a gala dinner held to raise funds for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital raised eyebrows instead when it emerged that veteran music couple Caiphus Semenya and Letta Mbulu were paid R230 000 for a 15-minute set.
Mbulu told Sunday World they had been booked for an hour-long set, but “were told that due to the programme being so full we had to sing for like 15 to 20 minutes”.
She referred payment queries to their manager, Mandla Baloyi, who would not divulge how much the couple had been paid.
However, he did take a dig at the organisation of the dinner. “It was unprofessional. Everything was delayed, with the ministers talking and talking. We struggled with the sound system. But in the end we did it for Madiba.”
The Saturday night concert also failed to impress; especially its star performer Brandy. The American R&B singer was a last-minute replacement for R. Kelly.
However, the organisers failed to inform the 52 867 attendees that there would be a star-studded concert that also featured Nigerian superstar D’Banj. People left in droves after the rugby game and Brandy performed to about 40 people instead of a 90 000 capacity crowd.
The embarrassing show made international news when Hollywood blogger Perez Hilton picked up on local singer Kabomo’s tweets of the singer’s humiliation.
Kabomo tweeted: “Brandy performed to an empty stadium. With the stadium lights on. She sulked after two songs and walked off.” Brandy has kept mum on the issue.
Vuyo Lutseke of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust said an announcement on how much was raised would be made soon.
Neither the department of sports nor the department of arts and culture took responsibility. “We will be in touch once we have a full statement, ” said Duduzile Nchoba from arts and culture.
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