Friday, April 18, 2008

Akon Mania

This week’s excitement has consisted of Akon coming to town. It seems as if the entire country has gone Akon-crazy! Our security guards have been begging for tickets for the last month. Cramer finally decided that the issue would be settled by arm wrestling…whoever could beat him could have a ticket. Nobody could beat Cramer, so no Akon tickets.

Monrovia was covered in banners and flags advertising for the concert, and there has been marked cars and motorbikes driving around to sell tickets. Here’s the kicker: the cheapest ticket was $20USD! So people probably went for a week without food just to buy a ticket. I never saw anyone buy a ticket, and I don’t know anyone who actually purchased a ticket. By the way, VIP tickets were $100USD, and I heard you could pay $200USD to eat dinner with the guy. I think they were trying to take advantage of all of the expats having money and needing some entertainment, but still…we’re in Liberia, where most people make a dollar or two a day!

The show was on Tuesday night at the SKD Sports Complex. I met an old friend two nights ago who went to the show because his school gave the top students tickets. I learned from him that Akon only performed 3 songs, and then the crowd was so out of control (apparently he invited the crowd to come closer or something—which you should never do in Liberia!) that they took him off the stage, and he never returned. So much for money well spent, eh?

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