Ovation Productions releases statement on Ben&Ben concert

Ovation Productions releases statement on Ben&Ben concert

After a barrage of complaints about the logistics of the Ben&Ben Homecoming 2022 concert, Ovation Productions released a statement to explain their side.

The #BenandBenHomecoming2022 concert on December 18, 2022, was an evening that Ben&Ben fans have been looking forward to for months. It was held at the SMDC Festival Grounds in Parañaque City.

However, what was meant to be a night of fun quickly turned sour due to the lack of organization. Many of the concert goers pointed out several gaps in the operations and called out Ovation Productions, the company in charge of the event.

Ben&Ben had already released a pubic apology on their social media page last December 20. A day after, on December 21, Ovation Productions also released their official statement on their social media page.

“Ovation Productions would like to sincerely thank Ben&Ben and the many fans who came to Sunday’s concert. It was indeed a milestone for Ovation Productions and Ben&Ben,” they began. “And because the turnout was massive, it had its share of logistical challenges that inconvenienced many of the fans. For this, we would like to apologize to everyone affected.”

Ovation Productions has been in the business for years already, and this was not the first time they had to deal with a huge crowd.

“Allow us to say that Ovation has had many previous outdoor events such as Usher, One Direction, Ed Sheeran, etc. even dating as far back as Metallica and Sting in the 1990s, but we never encountered complaints of this nature,” they declared. “We normally would have multiple entry points at both sides of the venue to facilitate fast and easy access and to keep the queuing short and fast moving.”

The Ben&Ben issue came after Swedish DJ Alesso was a no-show for a concert, originally slated a day before, on December 17, also at the same venue.

In the site map provided ahead of time, it showed that they had indeed planned for multiple entry and exit points on both sides of the venue.

However, on the day itself, only one side was operational. In their statement, the production company explained that changes had to be made the night before the concert, and went on to describe the logistical concerns that went on behind the scenes.

“The night before the concert, however, there was a joint decision made by event planners and venue management to keep gates on the right side closed to spare the people from walking over deep mud in that area,” they explained. “Since SMDC Festival Grounds was a new venue, there was ongoing construction work on the cement floor at the right side. The gates on the left side were deemed to be sufficient.”

Reports from concert goers attested that movement in and about the venue was chaotic. Many waited for over three hours in line. They found it difficult to figure out just which line where they were supposed to go, with some even being sent from one gate to another. At some point, the tickets were no longer checked at the gate. Some reported that the venue was so crowded that they were unable to reach their designated spot. There were some who originally were supposed to be nearer the stage, but had to stay at the back instead.

Ovation Productions explained that they were restricted in terms of posting information at the venue. While they admitted that there were lapses in security procedures, they explained that it became necessary in order to avoid further choas.

“We were disallowed to put up instructional signages along the perimeter fence and in the streets leading up to the venue to assist concert goers. Security procedures at the gates admittedly contributed in the slowing down of the flow but it was a necessary procedure,” they explained. “At some point, said security procedures were relaxed in order to unclog the choke points then later re-imposed when the situation improved. This was to prevent a potentially hazardous influx at the gates from occurring.”

Another complaint from concert goers was the apparent lack of marshals at the venue. Of those who were visible, people found them lacking in knowledge about the procedures and protocols that could have helped in guiding the attendees properly. The portalets were all on the farthest end of the venue opposite the stage, which meant that people had to go through thousands of fellow concert-goers to get to them. There were some who reported having to leave prematurely due to exhaustion. Many questioned the crowd control and emergency protocols given the sheer number of attendees.

Ovation Productions assured the public that they had enough people in the area, and were ready for any emergency.

“We had adequate security marshals within and outside the venue. Proper coordination was made with the Police Department and the Fire Department. Medical teams with ambulances were on standby,” they clarified. “By God’s grace, nothing untoward happened that would have required a need for these provisions.”

Ovation Productions acknowledged its accountability to the concert-goers and sent their apologies.

“We still recognize that at the end of the day, it is the Ben&Ben fans who have ben inconvenienced by all this and we apologize. We will do better next time,” they promised. “Ovation Productions is grateful to Ben&Ben and its fans Liwanag for their understanding.”

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