LOCAL music promoter, Bernie Bismarck’s BD Promotions failed to pay National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) royalties worth $15 000 after successfully bringing in Toni Braxton and Babyface to perform in the country.
Promoters bringing in foreign artistes are supposed to pay a certain amount of money to NACZ. Acting minister of Sport, Arts and Culture, Walter Mzembi on Friday confirmed the development during the launch of Sungura-ace Peter Moyo’s album entitled Mabasa aMwari. Mzembi said the promoter approached him for help to plead with NACZ to be allowed to bring the artistes into the country and pay them after the show.
Surprisingly, the promoter disappeared after the concert and has still not been found, nine days after the show, the minister said.
“A certain promoter asked me if he could pay up the royalties for bringing in [Toni] Braxton and Babyface after the show, and I had to liaise with NACZ on the issue,” Mzembi said.
“The promoter fled with money amounting to $15 000 that was supposed to be paid to NACZ and is still on the run.”
The Toni Braxton-Babyface concert took place a week ago at the Borrowdale Race Course in Harare.
The show was heavily subscribed, and saw thousands of fans forking out huge amounts of money ranging from $40 for the ordinary tickets, to $100 for the VIP tickets and $150 for VVIP tickets to see the American pair perform live.
Bismarck’s BD Promotions, which was co-organising the concert with South African promoters Canoc Live, could not be reached for comment on Saturday.
Mzembi said following this development, he would in future refrain from assisting any music promoters asking for help to bring in foreign artistes to Zimbabwe.