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Japan quake rocks tours of foreign acts

Concert tour schedules of foreign music artists in Korea have been rocked by last month’s massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan and local concert organizers claim they are finding it difficult to retrieve their sudden losses.

To the big disappointment of rock fans here, concert organizer 9 Entertainment recently said that Beady Eye, the U.K. group consisting of Liam Gallagher and other former members of Oasis, rescheduled their first concert in Korea, originally planned for May 15 at AX-Hall in Seoul.

“Beady Eye have announced that as a result of the continuing challenges being presented in the aftermath of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, they have been forced to reschedule their Far East tour, including their gig at Seoul’s AX Hall on May 15,” 9 Entertainment said in an emailed statement.
Beady Eye canceled their Seoul show on May 18 due to the group’s rescheduling of their Asia tour after Japan’s quake. (9 Entertainment)
Beady Eye canceled their Seoul show on May 18 due to the group’s rescheduling of their Asia tour after Japan’s quake. (9 Entertainment)

“The band members are disappointed that their first visit to Seoul has been postponed, especially as the last time the guys were there with Oasis they received a venue-shaking reception.”

Donna Kim, a spokesperson of 9 Entertainment, said the band plans to reschedule the tour for September but has not confirmed the exact date.

Another concert organizer Private Curve said on April 7 that U.S. pop artist Eric Bene’s concert in Seoul, initially scheduled for April 12 at AX-Hall, was canceled also due to a delay of his Asia-Europe tour in the aftermath of the Japanese quake.

“I am so sorry we had to postpone the date of the concert in Korea due to the situation in Japan but I look forward to visiting Korea again by rearranging my tour schedule as soon as possible. Thank you to all my Korean fans for your understanding,” Bensaid said in a letter to Private Curve.

Since the March 11 quake, canceled or postponed foreign acts in Korea have included British singer Fran Healy, American pop singer Ke$ha and American singer-songwriter and guitarist Raul Midon.

Private Curve spokesperson Kate Kim said the concert organizer could not help but lose money because of the venue rental fee paid in advance to AX-Hall, marketing expenses and the fees for canceled tickets.

“Unless the concert venue is directly hit by a natural disaster in Korea, we cannot get a refund of the venue rental fee under the contract with AX-Hall. But AX-Hall may help us by giving some discount in the next contract with us, considering our losses this time,” Kim said.

“As the venue rental fee is 10 million won ($9,200) per night, our loss will be more than that,” she said.

If the concert venue is big enough to accommodate more than 3,000 people, the concert organizer usually gets the show insured, but they don’t get an insurer for a small concert, she added.

Beady Eye concert organizer 9 Entertainment spokesperson Donna Kim also said the agency saw some losses due to the delay of the concert.

“Contracts between an agency and an artist vary case by case but usually, contracts are more detailed when we sign an agreement with a big star,” Kim said.

“In the case of Beady Eye, we’re trying hard to have them in Korea,” she said.
Acid jazz band Incognito held a concert in Seoul on Saturday, after a series of concerts in Japan from late March to early April, despite the quake and tsunami. (Southernstar Entertainment)
Acid jazz band Incognito held a concert in Seoul on Saturday, after a series of concerts in Japan from late March to early April, despite the quake and tsunami. (Southernstar Entertainment)

In contrast, acid jazz group Incognito went ahead with their Transatlantic Tour schedule and held a Seoul concert on Saturday last week at AX-Hall.

Despite the earthquake, the band held concerts in Tokyo, Osaka, Hiroshima, Fukuoka, Nagoya and Yokohama from March 30 to Friday last week.

By Kim Yoon-mi (yooonmi@heraldcorp.com)
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