Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

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JensJohansson
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Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by JensJohansson » Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:05 am

First of all apologies to everyone who bought tickets and didn't get to see anyone play on Sunday.

The bands had a hard day as well, of course we all had looked forward to play. For Stratovarius it was pretty complicated travel, from Ilosaarirock in Joensuu Finland the previous day to Kiev. It was barely possible to make it in 24 hours but we did (it took something like 23 hours, I personally managed to sleep only about two hours on the plane from Munich to Kiev).

After finding out that the whole thing was canceled and getting a few hours more sleep, we all got together for some food and drinks. Lauri suggested we organize an impromptu gig in some club in Kiev. I was personally a bit wary since word got around that one of Arch Enemy's technicians had been robbed in the airport the previous day -- he had been forced to withdraw all possible cash from his ATM card at gunpoint.

But Finntroll did this, they played somewhere and it was apparently fantastic.

By the time Finntroll got back from their club gig, happy, sweaty and (hopefully) a bit drunk, they faced the same problem that the rest of us did -- our room keys didn't work any more, and our personal stuff in the rooms and all the bands' gear was being held hostage by the hotel since they hadn't gotten paid either. They also held everyone's passports. The hotel was the Hotel Rus, http://www.hotelrus.kiev.ua, and this hotel is without a question a place to be avoided if possible.

Eventually the bands had to solve this problem ourselves, the promoter was nowhere to be seen.

An especially shitty thing was that apparently at the venue no notice was given to the fans about the cancellation. No sign, no announcement, nothing.

There were a lot of rumors about why this happened and it was a bit difficult to find anything concrete out. Some of the rumors and counter-rumors:

* Online ticketing agency delayed payment until next week, venue and staff wanted payment already on Sunday. But the online ticket site http://www.tiketov.net/ is a web site which is controlled by the promoter...

* Fake tickets were in circulation.

* Bad ticket sales (this is what the promoter hints at in his brief statement). But the techs and bands that were there the first day said the crowd was quite OK, with sales of about 4000 or so.

So in the end it's just one of those rock'n'roll mysteries, the fans got ripped off, the bands got ripped off and all the money disappeared .. somewhere.

It seems much the blame for all this falls in the lap of the organizer Sergey Gorokh of WIMP Productions (email wimp@ukr.net, phone +380509415839, icq 282-011-652).

If there is any news about refunds or any other news I will post them here (I wouldn't hold my breath).

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by icecab21 » Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:35 am

Sorry to read all of this.
WIMP productions?
I think I can do a good job at avoiding that hotel. That was a horrible situation for you all. I guess it makes a good story for later. What would music be without these kinds of stories though? Best wishes for smooth traval and being able to share the music with fans.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by shg » Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:41 am

What a tragedy! A big effort, without anything, to you and fans. Hopefully things get clear and you have good lawyers.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by AAAAAAAAA » Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:33 am

:x :x :x One of the worst stories I heard.Never, never, never ,I will go to this country. A lot of barbaric Buncos. :x :x :x

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Irinia » Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:02 am

OMG :shock:
That is horrible news!
Must have been an aweful situation to be in :(

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by eagledreamr » Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:10 am

Wow, it's terrible for the bands and for the fans!
I hope the Arch Enemy guy didn't have too many things stolen, and that it didn't happen to otherband members/staff/fan.

And I guess this place will be avoided by a lots of bands in the future, it's sad for the metalheads in the country, but I guess it's better for the bands, their safety and the normal continuation of their tours...
Life's to short to cry
Long enough to try

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by RazielSR » Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:18 pm

What a disaster, and where is the promoter, Mr. RusiMafius? Having some free time? That people should be erradicated from the music indsutry.

Poor fans and poor all of you.
...Faster than light, higher than the sky, stronger than steel...We´re the legions of the Twilight...

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by HC » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:08 pm

A real disaster!
Very sad to hear that.

One of my friends was there. I'll see him tomorrow.
Hope everythings fine with him.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by JensJohansson » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:15 pm

RazielSR wrote:What a disaster, and where is the promoter, Mr. RusiMafius? Having some free time? That people should be erradicated from the music indsutry.

Poor fans and poor all of you.
FWIW I don't think they were mafia people..

The promoters seemed to announce the cancellation on their web site only yesterday (a day after it happened).

Also that there will be some sort of "moneyback schema" for the fans. I'm interested in hearing back from any Ukrainian fans whether this happens yet or not. As we all know, making an announcement on the interbutts is easy, making things happen in the real world difficult..

I read from the Pro Rock site's comment section (via google translate) that some poor fan wrote: "I came to this festival from Murmansk from Russia". I think I'll stop my little rock star whine about the horrible horrible Lufthansa flights I had now...

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Irinia » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:17 pm

I think the whole thing is just plain tragic :(
Both for the fans and the musicians involved..

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by julyyin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:27 pm

AAAAAAAAA wrote::x :x :x One of the worst stories I heard.Never, never, never ,I will go to this country. A lot of barbaric Buncos. :x :x :x
this story is one of the worst for Ukraine too. Yes, it's a shame for my country, but still, I beg everyone to remember that all this situation was the fault of one company - WIMP, but not the whole Ukraine. There are still reliable promoters. Also i must add that WIMP's guys tried to find solution 'till the very end when hope died.

And fake tickets actually really were in circullation - that was one of the main reasons of financial disaster.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by lalodrums2 » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:35 pm

Sorry to hear about that, thank you Jens for being considered to post this.

Shit happens everywhere unfortunately but we understand about that, it was out of your hands.

And I'm sure the country has nothing to do with that, stupid people are everywhere, don't blame it (aaaaa).

Good luck for the next gigs.

:beer: Cheers :)
...

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by JensJohansson » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:58 pm

And now they deleted the explanation from the pro rock web site. (Together with all the 300 or so comments from fans in Ukrainian.)

This is pissing me off now.

Since the pro rock organizers apparently don't like having an open discussion about what happened there, I opened this thread to unregistered users also. Just press quote and type away, discussion in any language is allowed in this thread (including Ukrainian of course).

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by LauriPorra » Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:58 pm

julyyin wrote:
AAAAAAAAA wrote::x :x :x One of the worst stories I heard.Never, never, never ,I will go to this country. A lot of barbaric Buncos. :x :x :x
this story is one of the worst for Ukraine too. Yes, it's a shame for my country, but still, I beg everyone to remember that all this situation was the fault of one company - WIMP, but not the whole Ukraine. There are still reliable promoters. Also i must add that WIMP's guys tried to find solution 'till the very end when hope died.

And fake tickets actually really were in circullation - that was one of the main reasons of financial disaster.
Of course we remember. Too bad the trip ended up like it did, i was really looking forward to playing my first concert in Ukraine. Kiev seemed very interesting city when we took a walk in the center. I hope that we can return some day and actually perform there.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Antoshka » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:02 pm

Dear Stratovarius :kiss1:,
on the behalf of all Ukrainian fans I would like to apologize for the terrible situation which happend on Pro Rock festival. We are deeply ashamed for all your troubles and so much disappointed for cancelling of your performance.
We've been waiting for you so long.. :(
It's quite easy to understand that you have no wish to visit Ukraine any more, but we have some other promotion agencies (not only WIMP Promotion) which held many concerts and festivals in Ukraine and those concerts were successful both for the bands and fans. I hope, some day you will not be angry hearing the word "Ukraine" any more and we will be able to visit your concert in our country.
As for this moment - we wish you to get all necessary compensations from WIMP Promotion and never have such troubles in future :)

Sincerely yours,
fans from Ukraine

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Irinia
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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Irinia » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:06 pm

I don't think Stratovarius is angry at Ukraine or the fans, just the promoter that fucked the whole thing up.
Like Lauri just said also:
LauriPorra wrote:I hope that we can return some day and actually perform there.
Really hope Strato will come back to your country and play there at a later time Antoshka :)
*Hugs*

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Survivor » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:12 pm

First of all, sorry for my bad English because I have quite a little experience of English communication.

I live in Kiev, Ukraine. I'm one of the visitors of ProRock fest and for me the announced set of Stratovarius was one of the most attractive events there. For me the cancellation of the second day was great shock and disappointment especially because of the first day I enjoyed very much. At this moment all second-day and both-day fest visitors are waiting for publication of moneyback shema.

I've read published in your community article and to say that it is unpleasant for me is to say nothing. The biggest shock was of course information about the trouble with Arch Enemy's technician and your hotel problems. I even don't know how to comment this. Maybe in such way. The only thing I feel is the shame for our criminal, political and economic situation from which first of all suffer our country's population and, sometimes, foreigners visiting Ukraine. At the beginning of the twentieth century famous writer Bulgakov noticed that "Ruin is not caused by lavatories but it's something that starts in
people's heads". It's our great tragedy that this quote still remains actual.

I understand that such a great failure is the hit not only for ProRock fest or concert agency reputation, but for the whole Ukraine's image. But as I know such problems are not rules but exceptions. During several years my friends and me had enjoyed a lot of world famous bands' and singers' concerts (including Finish bands) such as Therion (twice), Helloween, Tarja, Apocalyptica (their second visit to Ukraine is planned on the end of summer), The Rasmus, Scorpions (four times) and so on. Of course, we don't have information if they had organisational problems but we've found their shows amasing. So I hope that ProRock problems wouldn't become the fact that will cross any possibility to hear Stratovarius in Ukraine, especially in Kiev.

With great hopes.
Alina aka Survivor.

P.S. Join to Antoshka's message.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by julyyin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:12 pm

JensJohansson wrote:And now they deleted the explanation from the pro rock web site. (Together with all the 300 or so comments from fans in Ukrainian.)
yea, they just left the info about second day cancellation... One more to the pile of their mistakes, fatal mistakes.

P.S. Together with Antoshka and Survivor.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Antoshka » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:23 pm

Survivor wrote: During several years my friends and me had enjoyed a lot of world famous bands' and singers' concerts (including Finish bands) such as Therion (twice), Helloween, Tarja, Apocalyptica (their second visit to Ukraine is planned on the end of summer), The Rasmus, Scorpions (four times) and so on.
I can add some more bands to this list :)
Within Temptation, Dark Tranquillity, Satyricon, Cradle Of Filth, Pain, Behemoth, Amorphis, Kreator, Haggard, Rage, Lacrimosa, Exodus and so on. I really hope to find Stratovarius in this list some day.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by JensJohansson » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:28 pm

Antoshka wrote:I hope, some day you will not be angry hearing the word "Ukraine" any more and we will be able to visit your concert in our country.

Sincerely yours,
fans from Ukraine
Oh dear .. I hope you realize we're not angry even today hearing the word "Ukraine"!? :) It's not a whole country's fault that something went wrong on Sunday.

We'll try to come back some day, and to actually play too. Just so you know we did what we could. Also posting this is part of doing what we can. Holding promoters to a high standard will help the possibility of us, and other bands, to play there.

It really sucks when fans get ripped off. When musicians get ripped off.. well, it's more normal in a way, you sort of get used to it. :lol:

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by julyyin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:29 pm

Antoshka wrote:
Survivor wrote: During several years my friends and me had enjoyed a lot of world famous bands' and singers' concerts (including Finish bands) such as Therion (twice), Helloween, Tarja, Apocalyptica (their second visit to Ukraine is planned on the end of summer), The Rasmus, Scorpions (four times) and so on.
I can add some more bands to this list :)
Within Temptation, Dark Tranquillity, Satyricon, Cradle Of Filth, Pain, Behemoth, Amorphis, Kreator, Haggard, Rage, Lacrimosa, Exodus and so on. I really hope to find Stratovarius in this list some day.
to add: Haggard was by Global Promotion, and even though these promoters had to delay the show and lose money, they still paid everything to musicians and organised fantastic concert for Haggard's fans in spite of all reasons.

Tolik Alkoholik

Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Tolik Alkoholik » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:29 pm

LauriPorra wrote:
Of course we remember. Too bad the trip ended up like it did, i was really looking forward to playing my first concert in Ukraine. Kiev seemed very interesting city when we took a walk in the center. I hope that we can return some day and actually perform there.
Lauri, Jens and the rest of the guys. Hope your trip back home was much better than your stay in Kiev. Once again I would like to apology for all this shit happened (I hope your're not tired from my apologies for last two days))).

P.S.Lauri, I requested promoters to send T-shirts for you and guys as promised yesterday in the airport;)

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by julyyin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:33 pm

JensJohansson wrote:
Antoshka wrote:I hope, some day you will not be angry hearing the word "Ukraine" any more and we will be able to visit your concert in our country.

Sincerely yours,
fans from Ukraine
Oh dear .. I hope you realize we're not angry even today hearing the word "Ukraine"!? :) It's not a whole country's fault that something went wrong on Sunday.
your Ukrainian fans are absolutely happy that you understand that:) Unfortunately, majority of people do not distinguish this two meanings, fans as well as bands.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Survivor » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:36 pm

JensJohansson wrote:It's not a whole country's fault that something went wrong on Sunday.

We'll try to come back some day, and to actually play too. Just so you know we did what we could. Also posting this is part of doing what we can. Holding promoters to a high standard will help the possibility of us, and other bands, to play there.
You don't know how I'm glad to read this message. :)

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by HC » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:45 pm

Antoshka wrote:
Survivor wrote: During several years my friends and me had enjoyed a lot of world famous bands' and singers' concerts (including Finish bands) such as Therion (twice), Helloween, Tarja, Apocalyptica (their second visit to Ukraine is planned on the end of summer), The Rasmus, Scorpions (four times) and so on.
I can add some more bands to this list :)
Within Temptation, Dark Tranquillity, Satyricon, Cradle Of Filth, Pain, Behemoth, Amorphis, Kreator, Haggard, Rage, Lacrimosa, Exodus and so on. I really hope to find Stratovarius in this list some day.
C'mon! Exodus never played in Ukraine 8)

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by shg » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:52 pm

julyyin wrote:And fake tickets actually really were in circullation - that was one of the main reasons of financial disaster.
I think fake tickets are really really bad thing, if such has been the traffic. Who idiots makes them? It takes trust completely.

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Antoshka » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:54 pm

HC wrote:
Antoshka wrote:
Survivor wrote: During several years my friends and me had enjoyed a lot of world famous bands' and singers' concerts (including Finish bands) such as Therion (twice), Helloween, Tarja, Apocalyptica (their second visit to Ukraine is planned on the end of summer), The Rasmus, Scorpions (four times) and so on.
I can add some more bands to this list :)
Within Temptation, Dark Tranquillity, Satyricon, Cradle Of Filth, Pain, Behemoth, Amorphis, Kreator, Haggard, Rage, Lacrimosa, Exodus and so on. I really hope to find Stratovarius in this list some day.
C'mon! Exodus never played in Ukraine 8)
Yes, I'm sorry, it was Overkill :oops:

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by Antoshka » Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:57 pm

JensJohansson wrote: Oh dear .. I hope you realize we're not angry even today hearing the word "Ukraine"!? :) It's not a whole country's fault that something went wrong on Sunday.
It's really good to hear. Thanks for giving me hope :)

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Re: Problems at Pro Rock festival in Kiev Ukraine

Post by julyyin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:13 pm

shg wrote:
julyyin wrote:And fake tickets actually really were in circullation - that was one of the main reasons of financial disaster.
I think fake tickets are really really bad thing, if such has been the traffic. Who idiots makes them? It takes trust completely.
Those people who wanna make money. Also there were problems with militia (guards) who never respested metal-lovers and organisers and were likely to let people without ticket see the show for just a hundred of grivnas.

a bit of fresh information: most ticket-sellers only yesterday started sending money to WIMP Promotion thoujgh they had to do it on Friday and if they'd done the second day would have gone as it was planned.

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WIMPed out

Post by ArchFriend » Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:28 pm

I'm so sorry this had to happen to you guys:(
As a resident of Ukraine, I find this situation shameful and outrageous beyond all measure.

On the Pro Rock official forum, the promoters are now facing a crowd of visitors who are totally pissed off - and they are trying to come up with a bunch of lamest excuses imaginable.
For your information, I will give you a quick rundown of what they say so that you don't have to decypher their whinings from Russian.

1. They claim the attendance was lower than they planned
(But let me tell you that they had never bothered about advertising the festival, in the first place. Information about the venue had been spreading by word of mouth, no mentions in mass media, no real outdoor ads. With just a little effort, attendance could have been easily triple that size)

2. Lots and lots of false tickets in circualtion, they say
(Once again, no effort to tackle this evident problem: no bar code scanners at the entrance, nothing)

3. They say that "corrupt security and police" smuggled thousands illegal visitors through the entrance for a bribe of 50 UAH (6 USD) per person.
(Is that REALLY a valid excuse for a promotion company that was supposed to be in charge of the security setup??)

These are all the reasons for the failure that they quote.
Oh, one more thing: they claim that the second day would have succeeded, had they sold at least 700 entrance tickets during the first day, instead of the 300 they sold.
(Now wait a minute, they quote that the festival's budget was about USD 400,000 - but in the same discussion thread they say they were just USD 15,000 short - and that's the reason they had to abort the festival?!)

One more thing you will surely like. Having been repeatedly asked why there was never a single cancellation announcement/ explanation for the visitors, the promoters say that the police didn't allow their representative onstage to make an announcement - for the fear of possible violent actions by the crowd.
So what they did instead was just send a squad of special police to the tent camp with a rude message to pack up and get the fuck out WITHIN THIRTY MINUTES.

I'm saddened and humiliated by this disgrace to Ukraine, to your loyal fans, to people who wanted to have fun and enjoy the music.
The way they treated you and the other bands was unbelievably disgusting.

Just wanted you to know that thousands of people in Kiev share your indignation.

Please come back one day - but do run a thorough check on the promoters next time:(

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