Fall Ball attendees were disappointed when rapper Lil Wayne did not perform his scheduled set at the hip-hop collective concert this Saturday at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, South Carolina. Local news site WIS10 reported that the venue offered refunds to fans Sunday morning, but retracted that offer by Sunday afternoon.
Lil Wayne was among several artists, including 2 Chainz, Tory Lanez and Cardi B, on the Fall Ball lineup. A statement released Sunday morning from the venue, Colonial Life Arena, said the reason for Lil Wayne’s absence on stage was because he “elected not to enter the building through the venue’s standard safety procedures”. CLA continued: “The safety of its patrons, its performers, and its staff members is and continues to be the number one priority for Colonial Life Arena. While we regret the artist’s decision not to perform, Colonial Life Arena is not willing to bypass its security standards and jeopardize the safety of its patrons, performers, or staff members. Colonial Life Arena will provide refunds starting on Monday at 10 a.m. for patrons. Refunds are will be available at the point of purchase.”
The venue, however, seemingly spoke too soon. MTS Entertainment, Ben Hated, LLC, and Victory Promotions- the promotional groups in charge of the Fall Ball- wrote a letter to Colonial Life Arena that afternoon informing the venue that “after careful consideration and a consultation with [their] attorneys”, the groups had decided not to offer refunds, after all, on the basis that the 35 year-old Young Money rapper was not technically the show’s headliner. “Each artist on the 2nd Annual Fall Ball is a headlining act in their own right”, the letter contended. In other words: “This was not a Lil Wayne concert”.
While Lil Wayne may very well be the most well-known rapper with the longest and most successful career in the line-up, the refund issue boils down to semantics. MTS, Ben Hated, and Victory Promotions say that flyers and promotions never once referenced Lil Wayne as the headliner of the Fall Ball, and attached to the letter Lil Wayne’s “non-headlining” contract. Therefore, they argue “no refund should be offered in Lil Wayne decision not to perform”, adding that “all of the attendees still received a full concert with major acts that was well over $200k.”
Colonial Life Arena issued a response statement, assuring fans that they disagreed with the promoters’ decision and “will continue to represent the interest of our patrons regarding refunds”. Refunds were not issued as originally scheduled at 10 AM this morning, but CLA asks dissatisfied Fall Ball attendees for their patience in awaiting a final outcome. Lil Wayne did not comment on his absence at the show.