Radio Sandwell Music

Council's £425,000 Alicia Keys gig probed

2012-10-14 00:27:47

A one-off concert starring Alicia Keys that cost Manchester City Council about £425,000 to stage is to be investigated by a spending watchdog.

The council's Liberal Democrats group called for the action after the free event held at Manchester Cathedral.

The Labour-run council said it helped to organise the concert to showcase the city's global profile.

Keys, a 14-time Grammy award-winning artist, performed on 24 September for the MTV Crashes series.

A spokesperson for the council said the issue would be discussed by the council's finance scrutiny committee.

'Absolutely preposterous'

A detailed report will also be published.

Simon Wheale, a Lib Dem councillor, called it a "ludicrous amount of money" for the council to be spending.

The concert was shown on an outdoor screen at Cathedral Gardens for members of the public who were not allocated tickets.

Jonathan Isaby, political director of the Taxpayers' Alliance, said he had never heard of a concert partly-funded by the public on such a "grand scale".

"The idea that a city council involves itself in what should quite frankly be a commercial venture seems absolutely preposterous to me.

"I think it's quite shocking, particularly at a time when money is so tight and councils have to look at every single penny they spend really carefully, I just don't think you can justify this."

Speaking after the concert, Alicia Keys called the cathedral a "spectacular" place to play and called Manchester a "city of music".

She said: "It's such a different experience to perform live in a place of worship, the architecture is so beautiful, it was incredible."

The artist has sold more than 35 million albums worldwide.

Source: bbc.co.uk

Share this story

Related Music Stories

Music around the web

Will Smith was broke when he landed role on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air

Janelle Monae's film career influenced her new music  

Outkast Reunites to Celebrate Big Boi's Son's High School Graduation in Georgia

J. Cole, Playboi Carti & N.E.R.D. Deliver Explosive Performances for Day 1 of Rolling Loud Festival

Chance the Rapper Delivers Dillard University Commencement Speech

Jennifer Lopez: 'Shades of Blue end is bittersweet'

Hayley Kiyoko and Kehlani slam Rita Ora's new track

Dua Lipa swears by pre-show superstitions

Britney Spears uses stage persona to overcome extreme shyness

Popcaan Announces New Album 'Forever,' Brings the Sunshine With 'Body So Good' Single

Image Slider