JON OLIVA'S PAIN - Concert In Dubai Cancelled2012-06-26
The concert of the North American Heavy Metal band JON OLIVA'S PAIN in Dubai, UAE has been cancelleddue to flight problems. The band was going to perform tonight (Tuesday 26th June) at the Sensation Club for the first time ever in the region. The concert was going to be part of the 25th Anniversary tour of "Hall Of The Mountain King", SAVATAGE's Metal masterpiece from 1987. They were going to be supported by the Syrian Heavy Metal band THE HOURGLASS
This is the official statement from the artist:
"JON OLIVA'S PAIN is currently touring to celebrate Savatage's "Hall of the Mountain King" album, released 25 years ago. The tour got off to a good start, and both the band and crew were looking forward to play in Dubai for the first time. That dream came to an end when met by Qatar Airways' supervisor at Brussels airport. Having traveled the world for many years and with many different airlines, the band and crew have never experienced such lack of ability to accommodate 12 ticketholders with a small special need. After 30 years of traveling with different bands, no one from this band and crew have ever met a smaller person. The band members carried guitars and two bass guitars in soft gig bags, which were accepted on board by the carrier taking them to Europe a few days prior to this incident (and has always been accepted by all other airlines in the past). Qatar Airways insisted that soft bags with valuable and irreplaceable instruments were to be checked in as normal baggage and loaded in the plane's compartment. Trying to talk sense to the supervisor was only met by a somewhat polite decline, claiming it was company policy to check said instruments, which later was denied by the same airline when our Dubai promoter made a call to Qatar Airways.
To cut the story as short as possible, attempts were later done to try to go to Dubai with Turkish Airlines, who had no problems letting guitar bags into the cabin, as well as Etihad Airways, who also said "no problem" when hearing about the small special request. The Dubai promoter did any -and everything possible to make the show happen, even offering to buy business class tickets for the entire travel party with Turkish Airlines to solve this (willing to take a guaranteed loss to avoid canceling the show) - only to find out that Qatar Airways refused to accept the return tickets from Dubai to Brussels as the band and crew did not board for the first part of the trip. Etihad Airways was the next possible solution, but trouble with ticket payments (only hard cash or the credit card from someone present at the ticket counter accepted) made this impossible. After spending 6 hours at the airport running back and forth between airlines and talking to the Dubai promoter, the band and crew realized that the actions of a small man who had his own strict policy and could not think a little bit outside the box, made this day one of the most miserable ever. The Dubai promoter was willing to go far beyond what made financial sense in order to bring the show to Dubai and stick to his commitment, which makes this even more sad for all parts involved, except for the triumphant Qatar Airways supervisor with his own agenda."
Rawad Abdel Massih, guitarist of THE HOURGLASS, commented about the cancellation:
"You can't believe how much a disappointment is this for us. Actuallly, the most disappointing thing ever happened to us since we started the band 10 years ago.
I have to say to the people who have doubts about the story (and here I am talking from the promoter's perspective), this story is a true story, it is not a lie. But like many, I don't find what happened reason enough for not taking the flight. JOP [Jon Oliva's Pain] have their own opinion and that's their own call. But from our side, I guess the problem should have been solved by shipping them on the cost of the promoter, or checking guitars in Dubai, have them tuned and ready, or any other solution that could be possible. You know in Dubai there is every kind of guitar including a 5000$ Gibson Les Paul, and as a band manager they should have always a Plan B, or else most of the shows would be cancelled because everyone faces this kind of shit always. So briefly, personally I don't find it an enough reason for JOP to not take the flight, but they take their own decisions.
Honestly guys, I was with Sharbel [the concert's organiser] the whole time next to him when he spent 4 hours making tens of calls with the management of JOP. You should know guys that Sharbel really is not responsible for ANYTHING, he has ready even to lose 100,000 AED in the show, but JOP's manager said he doesn't have the money to pay for his new tickets at the Brussels Airport, and there was no way (technically) for Sharbel to pay that until next day morning to verify his CC no.
From our side, as THE HOURGLASS, and as I said, I guess there is no one as much as us got disappointed from what happened. It was our dream which became a nightmare. BUT we will not just go home after spending so much time, effort and money in this. We will be playing at Metal Asylum on Friday the 29th.
Many thanks for everyone who helped us reach here. And guys, I know it's a huge disappointment for you, but at minimum Sharbel is an honest man who will be refunding every dime. We hope to see you at Metal Asylum, guys".
THE HOURGLASS have confirmed a show for all their Dubai's fans on Friday 29th June. They will play alongside the local Rock band RIFF RAFF at their debut album's launch concert and with the local female rocker FATINIZA. The concert will take place at Greenbelt Lounge, located at the Astoria Hotel in Bur Dubai.
More information about the event is available clicking HERE