News May 14, 2018

The Smith Street Band cancel gig after punter arrested at under 18s show

The Smith Street Band cancel gig after punter arrested at under 18s show

cancelled their show in Castlemaine last night after it emerged that a fan at their under 18s show on Saturday had been sexually assaulted.

Frontman Wil Wagner announced the cancellation on Facebook, stating that he found out following the Saturday show at the Hawthorn Arts Centre*.

“At the moment I feel like I never want to play a show again,” said Wagner.

“We played an under 18 show yesterday that felt lovely and wholesome and special. Then after I found out someone groped someone in the crowd and was apprehended and arrested.”

Wagner went on to explain that out of respect he wouldn’t be giving out any further details of the incident, but spoke of how passionately he feels about the issue of sexual misconduct at gigs.

“Anyone who’s seen me perform a few times over that journey knows how seriously I take this and how much it fucking kills me,” he said.

“We’ve developed other ways of trying to ensure a safe environment, we work with venues well in advance of the show and brief security on the night about how we need people to behave, we have posters up around venues and we ask door people to let punters know a few rules before they come in.

“I know there’s only so much I can control,” Wagner continued. “If you get a thousand people in a room some of those people are gonna be shit, that’s just an unfortunate fact of life.

“But when something like this happens I lay awake all night blaming myself and thinking of how I can do better and how I can help more.”

He signed off by apologising again for “making other people’s trauma about me.”

Read the full statement below.

Hey friends,We’re sorry but we’re gonna be cancelling today’s show in Castlemaine. At the moment I feel like I never…

Posted by The Smith Street Band on Saturday, 12 May 2018

1800 RESPECT is the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service and can be reached on 1800 737 732. Or for information regarding mental health contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

*TMN originally reported that the cancelled show had taken place at the Chelsea Heights Hotel. The alleged incident in fact took place at Hawthorn Arts Centre.

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