I first read about this here………
The Peace Concert for Burma that we were planning to present tomorrow will need to be postponed. The police informed us today that we cannot hold the concert outdoors, because it is “cause” related.
We are in the process of re-scheduling the event for sometime in November, and with a change in venue to an indoor location, namely The Substation Theatre.
We’ll keep you posted on the details once we have the required approvals.
Thanks for your understanding and support, and we’ll be in touch soon.
TODAY, Tuesday • October 16, 2007
Ansley Ng and Christopher Toh
It would have been like any other night at this alfresco bar and bistro known for its live performances: Local bands playing cover hits and original songs.
Except that tonight, candles would have been lit and a moment of silence respected — in a show of support for the people in Myanmar.
But the “Peace Concert for Burma”, co-organised by arts centre The Substation and Timbre (picture), the bar adjacent to it, will not go ahead as planned. The police have said no to the three-hour gig.
Responding to queries from Today, a police spokesman said: “The organiser was advised by Police to hold the concert indoors. Political and ’cause’-related events are assessed to have a higher potential to stir emotions and controversy; an outdoor concert may lead to law and order concerns.”
The Substation had contacted the authorities last week for permission to hold the concert and informed them of the programme.
Mr Lee Weng Choy, The Substation’s artistic co-director, informed them there would be no “banners and speeches” and submitted the identity card numbers and nationalities of the musicians — and the songs they would play, which were mostly covers of groups such as U2, Oasis, Rolling Stones and the Beatles.
“Our policy at The Substation is whenever we do something that we know is somewhat controversial, we push as much as we want but we also tell people exactly what we want to do,” he said.
The police then told the organisers yesterday that the event could not be held, said Mr Lee.
Last month, police also rejected a request by The Substation to hold an outdoor flea market near the Fort Canning Tunnel that would have included booths run by 19 civil society groups, including the Vegetarian Society, the Cat Welfare Society and two gay support groups.
The Substation consequently did away with the outdoor booths for the civil society groups.
As for its peace concert, The Substation now plans to hold it in next month in its theatre and will submit another application to the authorities.
“Many in the local arts community have had Myanmar on their mind and a number of individuals have been involved in petitions and vigils,” said Mr Lee.
The Substation’s other artistic co-director Audrey Wong said they had expected people “from our mailing list, artists and those from the arts community” as well as members of the public and Timbre regulars tonight.
The bar can accommodate 100 people.
Timbre regular Eve Ang, 27, was puzzled by the decision to disallow the concert. “If we can have candlelight vigils in various universities to show support for the people of Myanmar, what is a concert?” she said. “I don’t see what is the big deal of holding a concert at a place that has rock acts playing every week anyway.”
The live acts will go on tonight as usual — minus the candles and the moment of silence.
Note from Pseudonymity: Read Yawning Bread’s Sept’06 article Who owns the street?