The ticket sale for the UK of Prince’s Spotlight: Piano & A Microphone Tour was suddenly cancelled a mere fifteen minutes before they were due to go on sale at 10am on Friday 13th. The coincidence of the date proved no hokey superstition as fans were left disappointed at being left empty handed.
It is understood Prince had become aware that a large swathe of the tickets in the moments prior to the 10am public sale (the ticket agencies prompting that a restriction in place of two tickets per name across all tour dates) was resold to and obtained by sister agencies who in turn listed the tickets in excess of £2,500 apiece – a practice which was exposed by Which? consumer magazine in October 2015 – way and above the face value of £55 to £175. Whilst Prince’s stance against unauthorised sales was understood by fans, many took to Twitter to express their displeasure at having rearranged their schedules, to no avail, to make themselves available to snap up a ticket at the 10am sale, only to find out minutes before that the sale had been postponed and given no further information when it was likely to be rescheduled. It may be considered more than a coincidence that Andy Allo’s London show on 4 December was also cancelled that morning.
It is understood Prince is contemplating an alternative arrangement, including having tickets available only at the venues and necessitating fans to fans to beat a path to the venues and queue there to buy directly from the kiosk. It is likely a rescheduled online sale will still take place.
Some fans argue the decision to postpone the entire sale is unlikely to have combated the touts anyway, since that with ID checking, which was routine during Prince’s HITNRUN concerts of 2014, would have given an adequate level of protection against the touts.
UPDATE as of 16 November 2015
It has been confirmed by the promoter the Prince Spotlight: Piano & A Microphone tour is postponed “until further notice” in light of the tragic events that took place in Paris on the evening of Friday 13th, the same day as the planned ticket sales, delayed by concerns with touts obtaining large blocks of tickets.
It is particularly poignant in that the Bataclan Theatre, where one of the terrorist incidents took place, is a well trodden path for Prince fans. It was announced that it was inappropriate to proceed with a tour at this time and under these circumstances. Prince joins a list of other high profile acts, including U2, Morothead, and Foo Fighters, who have likewise cancelled their European tours and particularity their Paris dates out of respect to the victims of the terrorist attack in Paris and its resulting safety concerns for public events. See our Piano & A Microphone Gala Event article for an update.
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