Kanye West praised by festival bosses

MusicBy Sunday World
Kanye West praised by festival bosses

Kanye West has been praised by the Meadows Music & Arts Festival organisers for how he dealt with cutting short his set.

The 39-year-old rapper stopped his headline performance at the New York event after an hour on Sunday (02.10.16) evening, citing a "family emergency", after his wife Kim Kardashian West was robbed at gunpoint in Paris, and event bosses think the fact he gave a reason for an early departure made the crowd more understanding.

Founders Entertainment's Jordan Wolowitz said: "I happened to be backstage when it went down, so we all dealt with it in real time. I think the team handled it as smoothly as they could in terms of getting Kanye out of there safely and, to Kanye's credit, having the instincts to say that he had a family emergency before he dropped the mic and walked off stage really helped things.

"If he had said nothing and just walked off, there could have been potential crowd issues so the situation went about as well as it could in terms of everyone's safety and well-being.

"The news, as the whole world knows, broke within the hour, so I think that for people leaving the festival looking at social media, it just blew up everywhere.

"We're just really happy that his family is OK and everything seems to be good with them."

The event had earlier been hit by a blow when The Weeknd pulled out as he was also performing on 'Saturday Night Live' but organisers don't hold a grudge and would happily put him on the bill at another of their festivals in the future.

Jordan told Billboard: "The Weeknd made a choice to cancel his appearance at the Meadows, and we have to respect the artists' wishes at the end of the day.

"From what we gather, it was totally a scheduling situation, and a difficult one for him. He's a world class artist, and we have discussed his coming to play other events of ours in the future."

And Jordan and his business partner Tom Russell think the fact few fans were disappointed enough to ask for refunds shows how strong the festival bill - which also included Tygo, Cage The Elephant, the 1975, Chromeo and J. Cole - was.

Jordan said: "We had very few requests for refunds, which I think is a testament to the strength of the overall line-up."