Kehlani Calls Out LA Pride Festival for Turning Ticket Holders Away

LA Pride (Credit: Twitter)

Thousands of people left the LA Pride Festival unhappy Saturday night after organizers sold too many tickets and fans who waited in line to watch R&B sensation Kehlani perform were turned way.

The celebration was scheduled to run from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. in West Hollywood, with Kehlani set to take the stage at 11:15 p.m., according to the LA Pride 2018 website.

But around 10 p.m., organizers said a estimated 100,000 people had descended on the area and the event was at capacity.

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At that point, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and the fire marshal began ordering the crowd to disperse.

In response, angry attendees took to Twitter in droves blasting organizers and law enforcement.

“#LAPride was so horrible. Waited almost 2 hours in line only for the line to stop at the gate due to full capacity,” one person tweeted.

“#LAPride needs to learn how to run a safe and secure pride because this has got to be the most unstable pride yet,” another person wrote on Twitter.

Someone else tweeted: “@Kehlani please know #LApride prohibited people to come in bc they’re “over capacity” GURRRRL we bought tickets MONTHS AGO.”

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After getting word of what was happening, Kehlani tweeted an apology to fans.

“I’m seeing all your tweets and messages. I’m sorry LA Pride reached their full capacity and aren’t letting any more people in,” she wrote. “Y’all deserve refunds and i hope we get a chance to jam soon.”

During a live report on its 11 p.m. newscast, NBC Los Angeles described the response by sheriff’s deputies as “huge,” adding that the area was “an absolute mess.”

“People were trying to get into the event any way they could. They were trying to jump fences,” reported Gil Leyvas. “Two to three-hundred people that tried to push their way in assaulted one of the sheriff’s deputies, and that prompted even more response.”

Many fans said they bought tickets to the performances at the main stage months ago, and they wanted refunds.

Others wrote on social media that they felt unsafe amid the large crowds, and criticized organizers for over-selling the event.

The festival issued an apology early Sunday morning saying it would indeed offer refunds, but curiously deleted that tweet. Hours later, the festival posted a second apology.

“We are sorry and would like to apologize to everyone who could not get in after the venue hit capacity,” LA Pride wrote in its second statement on Twitter, adding that those with unused tickets could attend for free on Sunday.

You can read more of the reactions to Saturday’s shutdown below.