Legendary musician and singer AR Rahman broke his silence on Monday - September 11, a day after his chaotic concert in Chennai had sparked fury from his fans due to a series of flawless arrangements from the organiser of the concert, ACTC events. The musical icon took to X (formerly known as Twitter) and assured the fans to share their grievances and that his team will respond to them.
In the midst of being surfaced with disappointments from the fans, AR Rahman wrote on X, "Dearest Chennai Makkale, those of you who purchased tickets and weren't able to enter owing to unfortunate circumstances, please do share a copy of your ticket purchase to firstname.lastname@example.org along with your grievances. Our team will respond asap."
AR Rahman had also spoken to The Hindu exclusively over the blend of anger and disappointments from the fans during which he came out to take the accountability for what happened. He said, "I'm terribly disturbed and accountable for what happened." Speaking to The Hindu, AR Rahman said, "It was a tsunami of people and love that we were unable to handle. As a composer, my job was to give a terrific show, and I thought everything else would be taken care of."
He further said, "I was just thinking that it shouldn't rain, and was happily performing inside, without any idea of what was happening outside. Our intentions were good, but I think the response was beyond our expectations. We are collecting the data now, and we will surprise fans with something soon." "Right now, we are just terribly disturbed. Safety was the primary issue, especially because there were women and kids. I don't want to point fingers at anyone, but we have to realise that the city is expanding, and the passion to consume music and art is also expanding", Rahman added.
The concert was held on Sunday - September 10 at the Adityaram Palace City in Panaiyur, Chennai. It was a rescheduled event as the actual schedule was deferred from last month due to rains. The event was organised by ACTC events and the tickets were sold in various passes, starting from Rs 500. The people who had already bought tickets for the actual schedule were asked to produce the same during the rescheduled event on Sunday.
Over 45,000 people had estimated to have travelled to Chennai to attend the concert. However, most of them had gone red against the organisers in the wake of flawed arrangements and overcrowding. While hundreds of fans with vaild tickets worth Rs 2000 were barred from entering the venue, several others got into altercation with the police and organisers for poor arrangements.
It has been reported that the oversale of tickets sparked the overcrowding and there were allegations that several people were injured in a stampede-like situation and several women were molested. A fan took to X and wrote, "Very very bad audio systems. Couldn't hear any song or music. Too crowded, worst organisation, stampede, parking jammed, could not even return, need refund." Another fan wrote, "It was the worst concert ever in history #ARRahman #Scam2023 by #ACTC. Respect Humanity. 30 years of the fan in me died today Mr AR Rahman." Another disappointed fan wrote, "Very badly organised concert. Waste of money. Energy. Felt a huge sense of betrayal. I was feeling so stressed over good vibes because of so many fights and shit that was going around!."
Another fan wrote, "ACTC events, beyond your greed for money, at least you should have warned that elderly and little kids are not allowed. So sad to have witnessed what they went through." There were visuals showing disappointed fans tearing the tickets to display their anger and a score of audience have been demanding a refund from the organisers. Shockingly, a woman said that her son would have died due to overcrowding and that AR Rahman must answer for this mess.
"Worst worst worst concert ever. Very poorly organised concert by the organiser. No proper coordination from road to seating everything. Horrible planning. They have taken fans for granted. I feel like scam of money", another fan wrote and on the other hand, the gridlock on the road caused a major disruption and that was ubiquitous across the ECR. A sea of vehicles that came for the concert sparked heavy traffic and it remained the same for several hours amidst the struggle from the traffic police personnel to mitigate it.
The traffic jam had fueled the chaos and the anger of the fans. The traffic police had said that while it was estimated that around 6,000 vehicles would show up for the concert, the ECR witnessed the arrival of over 10,000 vehicles for the concert on Sunday due to which the scale of gridlock got intense. Hours after the poor and flawed arrangement for the concert sparked a major chaos with fans have gone furious, the organiser, ACTC events had broken its silence and extended its apology, while it went on to declare the event, in which it was alleged that several injured and women were molested, a massive success. Taking to X, ACTC events on Monday wrote, "Grateful to Chennai and the legendary AR Rahman sir! The incredible response, the overwhelming crowd made our show a massive success. Those who couldn't attend on overcrowding, our sincere apologies. We take full responsibility and accountable. We are with you."
Dearest Chennai Makkale, those of you who purchased tickets and weren’t able to enter owing to unfortunate circumstances, please do share a copy of your ticket purchase to email@example.com along with your grievances. Our team will respond asap🙏@BToSproductions @actcevents— A.R.Rahman (@arrahman) September 11, 2023