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Black Gay Pride promoters scuffle over Mary J. Blige

August 31, 2011
As city officials celebrate it and as tens of thousands of people arrive in Atlanta for Black Gay Pride this weekend, the gloves are coming off between two nightlife promoters over why Mary J. Blige’s highly-publicized appearances were canceled.


Girls In the Night, which is hosting a slate of Pride events called Femme Nomen-Non XVI, spoke out about the cancelation in a press release early Wednesday, asserting they were misled and defrauded by someone posing as a representative of Blige who isn’t, in fact, associated with the Grammy-winning singer.


Blige (photo) was scheduled to perform twice during Black Gay Pride – for Girls In the Night’s 16th Annual All White Affair for Women on Friday and for a Wassup N ATL event on Sunday.


“The truth is we contracted Mary J. Blige in good faith with a 50% deposit weeks ago,” Girls In the Night CEO Malissa Boles says in the press release. “The problem is, the Booking Agency we hired to contract Mary J. Blige had no legal authority to book her, therefore the contract is null–n-void & fraudulent.”


“Mary J. Blige cancelled appearance for Atl Femme-Nomen-Nal Pride For Women 2011 was not due to ticket prices, or lagging sells. This statement should not have been made or published because it is misleading, false and deceitful,” Boles adds.


Girls In the Night fired back in their press release to take aim at a statement issued Tuesday by Wassup N ATL that said lagging ticket sales and concerns over the ticket prices led them to drop the Blige appearance.


“This year we set out to bring a remarkable artist and icon to Atlanta Black Pride, the Queen of Hip Hop Soul Mary J Blige and we were looking very forward to a night with the Queen,” Wassup owner Mario Harris writes. “But there are times as a promoter, difficult decisions have to be made and we had to make a decision based on tickets sales and many of your concerns on what the cover cost would be for the event to cancel the Mary J Blige performance. It’s a part of the business.”


Girls In the Night says that once they realized that their contact was not associated with Blige, they worked quickly to try and book the singer for their event.


“Rather then retreat, and cancel we went into high gear to secure Ms. Blige as advertised,” Boles writes.


But the negotiations between Girls In the Night and Blige’s representatives apparently fell apart on Monday, leading the nightlife promoter to issue their statement.


“The truth is, we were defrauded. This situation has caused great pain & embarrassment. It was our goal to bring you one of biggest artist in the History of Atl Femme-Nomen-Nal Pride and it saddens us to make this announcement,” Boles writes.

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