Organisers of Grammy-nominated rapper Rick Ross’ concert slated for Harare in November have said they will explain and justify their seemingly steep pricing regime next week when they address issues to do with ticketing.
The statement comes on the heels of a hullabaloo on social media, sparked by the release of ticket prices with fans accusing promoters ROAR Entertainment and their partners of pricing them out of the mega gig.
The hip-hop star is scheduled to perform at the Harare International Conference Centre on November 18, but the supporting acts are yet to be unveiled.
Weeks ago there was also an outcry from some hip-hop fans who were vying for the genre to take the lead on the list of backing performers rather than those who are always added as headline acts when it comes to gigs featuring regional or international artistes.
But some argued that it is up to the promoter to come up with a suitable line up of supporting acts considering the market and business.
Organisers of the Rick Ross show have remained mum on the issue and promised to share further details about the gig later on.
Already flyers of the ticket prices are circulating on social networks with some justifying the prices while others said they were beyond the reach of many.
By the way who are the target audiences for Rick Ross and will he fill-up the giant auditorium, some questioned?
In April this year he staged a show in Lagos, Nigeria which was packed and the tickets were going from Naira10,600 which is about US$30 for standard tickets.
Earlier social media was agog with flyers announcing that the general access for the early bird at HICC has been pegged at US$50 per head and US$150 VIP ticket which will be available until August 31.
The VVIP silver ticket will cost US$3 000 while a VVIP gold ticket will cost US$4 000.
The biggest of them all was the VVIP platinum ticket which costs US$5 000.
A research on some of “You the boss” hit maker’s other shows revealed that he charges from US$100 – US$200 000.
Now some Zimbabweans were shaken about the ticket prices.
In this case, what people are forgetting is the general ticket is US$50 which is the normal ticket price we have been having in our local shows.
Yes, after the announcement the least number becomes the standard price.
Some industry players speculated that show organisers could have been “testing the waters” on how their fans would react by releasing the ticket prices.
Well, first things first, they won the battle as now the show has been marketed more with that.
Every, Jack and Jill now knows that Rick Ross is coming to Zimbabwe.
Questions have been submitted to the ROAR Entertainment spokesperson Shaleen “Ms Shally” Nullens to explain the “pricey tickets” of which she said for now she can’t explain anything until they “officialy” release a statement next week pertaining to the issue.
“I can’t explain anything until we officially release our prices. I will release an official statement regarding tickets next Thursday,” she said.
A survey conducted by this paper revealed that the nation is divided over the issue.
An avid fan of Rick Ross, 28-year-old Mcmillian Chenje from Zimre Park, said the US$50 was reasonable but wanted clarity on the US$5 000.
“I think our general prices here range from US$10-$50 for some of our local acts and we don’t complain. Those who afford can.
If the price release is true, the US$50 ordinary ticket is justifiable, remember there is more to that,” he said.
“Then on the US$5 000 price tag, isn’t it’s a table for 10 people which includes expensive whisky and theme set up. That means US$500 per individual. In that case those who can afford that can go ahead.”
Another fan said the released price list is too much.
“I think this is too much for many. We all want to watch the Grammy nominee Rick Ross perform in Zimbabwe, but I think I will resort to the streaming side. How much are they paying for the local acts? Do you think he is worth US$3 000? Is Zimbabwe ready for such kinds of show payments unless it is about the mbingas. How much is his show in Europe?” askedTatenda Kurayi from Highfield.
One promoter who commented on condition of anonymity said the prices were justifiable.
“The prices are US$50, $100-$150, for the early bird which is clear that one can purchase the ticket now. It is just that we are not understanding the US$3 000- $5 000 price tag. This is for the mbingas and they want to flex their muscles. Even in the States there are such instances. We should not complain about that. This is what the promoter wants. If you can’t afford, do what is within your means. Besides, have you checked the package that comes with the US$4 000 ticket?” he asked.