lright, so get this: Nicki Minaj flew all the way to Shanghai this weekend and warmed up in preparation for a 90-minute set, only to discover that the entire festival she was about to perform at was totally fraudulent. Welcome to China, Nicki!
While many of the details of this whole fiasco have yet to be verified, this one certainly appears to a scandal of epic proportions.
Minaj arrived in China to play at the DWP China festival on November 18th. DWP stands for Djakarta Warehouse Project, an annual dance music festival held for the last decade in December in Bali which has attracted top acts from all over the globe.
The event had advertised itself using DWP’s name and lettering. Posters listed Nicki Minaj as performing at the weekend festival, along with the likes of Blasterjaxx and Luis Fonsi (of “Despacito” fame), inside the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai’s western Qingpu district.
However, yesterday, when Minaj was scheduled to take the stage, fans at the venue waited for hours in vain.
The 35-year-old rapper-singer has yet to explain exactly what went wrong, however, we have a strong suspicion that she discovered, a bit too late, the true nature of the festival. You see, a few days before Minaj arrived in China, the event’s website (dwpchina.com) put up the following notice:
“The event rumored to take place in Shanghai on 17th & 18th of November 2018 is an unauthorized use of DWP trademark. DWP as a brand, has no association with the event. The alleged lineup artwork of DWP China, which has been circulating online is unauthorized.”
According to the online rumor mill, Minaj had been promised a whopping $3 million to play at the festival and was told that there would be at least 8,000 people in attendance for her show. However, only about 1,000 ended up showing up at the small venue.
Organizers allegedly attempted to blame Minaj for the problems, spurring on the crowd to chant her name in an effort at guilting her into coming out. It did not work.
— Roman Zolanskiiiieee | AUGUST 10 (@ZolanskieRoman) November 18, 2018
Instead, before jetting back to the US, Minaj filmed a quick apology to her fans.
“Thank you, guys. To my real fans, I love you so much,” she says. “I’ll be back you guys for my real fans, in Shanghai, in China. I love you so much… And I’ll be back with a better partner.”
To attend the concert, some fans paid as much as 3,000 yuan ($432) for their tickets, which they now may not be able to get refunded. It also seems unlikely that Minaj will be seeing much of that promised $3 million.
Minaj and DWP have yet to release any official statements about what happened in Shanghai. When this whole mess gets a bit clearer, we will update this story. Meanwhile, we can’t help but think back to 2009, when a “secret” Daft Punk show in Shanghai turned out to be only a giant scam.