R. Kelly denied permit to hold ‘Spring Break Jam’ concert in Illinois in wake of inflammatory docuseries
He was born and raised in Illinois, but R. Kelly is not welcome in Springfield.
Kelly, who has been embroiled in another sexual misconduct scandal since Lifetime aired a series called “Surviving R. Kelly” last week, was planning to hold the Spring Break Jam in April. However, organizers’ submission for a permit to hold the concert was denied on Thursday.
The event was to be headlined by the R&B star at the Exposition Building at the Illinois State Fairgrounds on April 6.
The permit was denied due to security concerns, Department of Agriculture spokesperson Denise Albert told the Chicago Tribune. The Department of Agriculture is responsible for reviewing permits since it was being held at the Illinois State Fairgrounds.
There have been protests against the pop star since the airing of the series, including one outside Kelly’s recording studio in Chicago on Jan. 9.
Promotion for the event had already begun, but the eventbrite page promoting ticket sales now just gives readers an error message. A separate page with information about the event makes no mention of R. Kelly, advertising rapper Yella Beezy as the featured performer. Tickets are on sale for $25 to $70.
Yella Beezy has had his own recent troubles. The 26-year-old Dallas native nearly died in October when he was shot three times in a drive-by shooting.
R. Kelly has faced scrutiny many times in the past over alleged sexual misconduct. He was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008. The case sprang from a sex tape mailed to the Chicago Sun Times in 2002 that allegedly showed Kelly engaging in sex acts with a young teen.
The new docuseries interviewed over 50 people, including dozens of women who accused the singer of abuse.
Kelly’s lawyer, Steven Greenberg, denied all of the allegations against the singer in an interview with ABC News last week. He called the series “crap” and said he and Kelly are considering filing a lawsuit for defamation of character.
“There are no underage victims. There are no sexual assault victims. There are no victims of domestic violence that they’re going to find,” Greenberg said. “It just didn’t ever happen.”
Lady Gaga was among a number of celebrities to recently speak out against R. Kelly. She apologized for recording a song with him in 2013 and said she supported the women featured in the Lifetime series. She said she would remove the song, “Do What U Want (With My Body),” from iTunes and streaming services.
Kelly, who grew up in Chicago, promised on his Facebook page on New Year’s Day that he would be releasing a new album soon and debuted the single “Born to My Music.” The singer’s “Memory Lane” tour, alongside Keyshia Cole and Adina Howard, wrapped up in November.