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The Star: Rave fans in upbeat mood

PETALING JAYA: In the wake of six people’s death at the Future Music Festival Asia (FMFA) last year, many fear that this would spell the end of the rave scene in Malaysia.

Those fears were compounded in April, when the much-anticipated Thirst: We Are All Stardust event was cancelled in the last minute.

But when The Star ran a story on June 1, revealing that the FMFA deaths were not caused by drugs overdose but rather, heatstroke, fans were hopeful that this would spark a return of rave events.

Concert promoters and organisers, however, aren’t as enthusiastic.

Asked about the future, Iqbal Ameer, group chief executive of FMFA organisers The Livescape Group, said: “That is an answer that only the authorities and government bodies can provide.

“At the end of the day without their involvement and cooperation, things will still remain the same.

“For us at Livescapes, we’ve organised over 200 events with no incidents, and we hope we are not judged by one isolated incident.”

Ben Law, director of Future Sound Asia, organisers of the Thirst: We Are All Stardust, said it was still too early to tell. “It will take time to change perceptions, and there are also other factors to consider.

“The economy is slowing down, and our currency is weak. Since we deal a lot in foreign currencies, this has a huge impact (on our ability to organise events) as well,” he said during a phone interview.

Future Sound Asia has also organised larger scale festivals such as the Good Vibes Festival last year, which featured international stars such as Ellie Goulding and Empire Of The Sun but Law said the FSA had no plan to hold such large-scale events in the near future.

“We won’t be doing the Good Vibes Festival this year, but might do it next year instead.

“What happened to Thirst throttled a lot of money, so we won’t be going in the direction of big-scale events for now,” he said.

“The key now is to get the cooperation of the relevant authorities, and have them working with us. Their participation is crucial, as it take two hands to clap.” he said.

Iqbal said the live events industry, through the Arts, Live, International Festivals and Events Association (ALIFE), recently submitted a proposal with guidelines for organising events to various government bodies.

This include the Central Agency Committee for Application for Filming and Foreign Artistes Presentations (Puspal), police, Customs, and local councils.

“But, there has yet to be any feedback,” he added.

Source from The Star.

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