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Live Nation Officially Cancels Travis Scott's 'Utopia' Show at Pyramids of Giza
The Egyptian Syndicate of Musical Professionals cited concerns with 'peculiar rituals' and stated that the Travis Scott concert contradicted Egyptian traditions, but Live Nation blames the cancelation on complex production issues.
Travis Scott's highly anticipated concert at Egypt's iconic Pyramids of Giza has now officially been canceled, according to a recent statement issued by Live Nation Middle East. The show was scheduled for July 28 and intended to serve as the debut performance for Scott's fourth album, Utopia. The announcement expressed deep regret and cited complex production issues that hindered the realization of the UTOPIA show in the desert setting.
The statement reads, "We regret to inform you that the UTOPIA show, originally scheduled for July 28th at the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt, is canceled. Unfortunately, despite our highest efforts, complex production issues meant that the show could not be constructed in the desert. We understand that this news is disappointing and not the outcome any of us desired."
The Egyptian Syndicate of Musical Professions, a local group responsible for granting permits, announced the cancellation of the show on July 4th. But Live Nation disputed this, telling Pitchfork:
“There have been no changes to Travis Scott’s show in Egypt; any reports to the contrary are false. We can’t wait to celebrate ‘Utopia’ with you in Egypt!”
In a statement, the Syndicate indicated that Scott's concert conflicted with its mission of preserving traditional Egyptian culture. The statement read, "As an integral part of our cherished nation, the General Syndicate is committed to its stability and security and refuses to compromise societal values, as well as Egyptian and Arab customs and traditions."
While the Syndicate has previously granted permits to foreign artists to perform at the pyramids, it stressed that such performances must not undermine Egypt's ancestral customs and traditions.
The musicians' union, which rarely opposes such events, has long been engaged in a campaign against Egyptian urban music, particularly rap. Moreover, Egypt is currently engaged in a battle against what it denounces as a "reinterpretation" of its history, particularly in relation to African-American movements claiming affiliation with the Pharaohs.
In 2020, the Syndicate issued a ban on Mahraganat music, a popular genre blending pop, techno, and R&B. Similarly, Lebanese rock band Mashrou' Leila was prohibited from performing in 2017 after a Pride flag was displayed at a concert in Cairo.
In the case of Travis Scott's planned performance, the Syndicate expressed deep concern over certain "rituals" that were set to take place. A statement from the group explained, "The syndicate discovered images and gathered information about the peculiar rituals he practices, which contradict our traditions." The Syndicate, however, did not provide specific details about Scott's planned actions.
Fans who were eagerly looking forward to the event will be issued refunds at their respective point of purchase. Live Nation expressed apologies for any inconvenience caused by the cancellation.
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