A major balcony show in Spain’s Barcelona has been cancelled by the city’s mayor in a dispute over money involving pop acts that were scheduled to take part.
A SERIES of gigs were planned for this Friday night (May 9) as performers reportedly were angry that Barcelona Council were going to spend €200,000 on the event.
Mayor Ada Colau scrapped the event just two days after it was launched as she faced criticism that the money could be spent on more important priorities amidst the coronavirus pandemic, and that artists felt exploited.
Bands and solo acts said that their services were being taken for granted as they were to get comparatively little from the budget, whilst they struggle to make a living during the crisis.
Mayor Colau said defiantly: “We will go nowhere with hatred and disagreement. What we need in these difficult times is to hear those who think differently and learn from mistakes through cooperation and solidarity.”
The show was meant to have been staged as a tribute to everybody’s efforts in following the State of Alarm rules during the Covid-19 crisis.
The event was going to be screened on a local TV channel, but the musicians started to pull out when they heard about the overall budget, as opposed to the minimal fees that they were going to be paid.
Around 20 acts were scheduled to play from their home balconies and rooftops with a video drone set to have been used to relay the footage.
As acts started to withdraw, the council said that the producers of the event, which was branded as a non-profit enterprise, would pay for everything.
That policy switch didn’t change the minds of performers who continued to quit, leading to the concert being cancelled.
The €200,000 was said to have been to cover the technical costs for the two production companies that would have been involved.
Reports suggest that the top fee for some acts was €1,500, whilst others turned down the initial offer, when they found out that they were not going to be paid at all.