Nicki Minaj praises 'class act' fans after her Manchester gig was cancelled following her arrest

Nicki Minaj
-Credit: (Image: PA Archive/PA Images)


Nicki Minaj has commended her fans for their understanding and class after her Manchester concert had to be rescheduled due to her arrest in the Netherlands.

The 41 year old rapper revealed that she spent approximately six hours in custody at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Saturday before being able to fly to the UK for her performance at Co-op Live arena. Fans were admitted into the venue around 7pm on Saturday, only for promoter Live Nation to announce at about 9.40pm that the show was being postponed.

Dutch police reported that a 41 year old woman was arrested on Saturday for allegedly attempting to transport what they referred to as "soft drugs" from Schiphol Airport to another country. A statement from the police force around 9pm indicated that the suspect had been released and was free to go after paying a fine.

Minaj expressed her gratitude to her fans on X, writing: "Manchester I appreciate you. Class act. Give me until (tomorrow) for the update on our new date (please)." She added that the rescheduled date would be "It will be sometime in June or July like I mentioned last night."

The singer also promised an "added surprise bonus" for her fans and expressed her anticipation for her return to Manchester for a second scheduled performance at Co-op Live on Thursday. Minaj then assured that Sunday's concert at Birmingham's Resorts World Arena would be a "magical beautiful happy fun unforgettable night".

She had invited her fans, affectionately known as Barbz, to her hotel in central Manchester and interacted with the crowd outside, including Alvin Christie from Liverpool, who defended her.

The 29 year old revealed to PA news agency that fans cared more about her welfare. He stated his concerns as he waited outside the venue since 9am for the concert, stating: "I would say it was very poorly managed. When we arrived into the event, they were actively telling fans that she had arrived and that everyone was going to dance tonight."

He expressed sympathy for those who got their hopes up, saying: "For a lot of people that were asking those questions, that's obviously (keeping) people's hopes up."

The fan pointed out that while perhaps the organisers wanted to assure everyone's safety, they perhaps could have informed them earlier, suggesting: "I understand that maybe they wanted to get people into the arena for health and safety risks to stop people being outside. But I think, most importantly, they maybe could have advised people as soon as they've known that the show was postponed and we should be turned away when we're outside the arena, rather than holding loads of people in the arena."

Edinburgh hotel manager Eileen Allardyce, 32, claims she spent roughly £2,500 on tickets, travel and hotel expenses and will not be able to attend the rescheduled date.

She spoke about the initial Co-op Live delay first announced in April during comedian Peter Kay's performance stating she was "on eggshells" with her friends who also bought tickets for Minaj.

She clarified her feelings regarding the situation, affirming: "Obviously, it's not Co-op's fault what happened in Amsterdam, and it's not Nicki's fault either, like, obviously, no blame for her at all," she said.

"But as I say, I just feel like the way they (the venue) handled it was just absolutely ridiculous. They have no clue, absolutely no clue. I don't think they were prepared for anything, to be honest."

The duo further claimed that there were inadequate amenities available to fans lined up outside the arena, underscoring the need for improvements at the facility.

Contrasting his experience at Co-op Live with Manchester's AO Arena, Mr Christie highlighted the availability of "general public facilities and coffee shops" at the latter.

Minaj confided that she had reached her hotel in Manchester early on Sunday after a prolonged delay due to spending "5-6 hours" in a cell and disruption to her flight from Amsterdam.

She disclosed that although the venue was open to extend beyond 11pm, she faced hurdles put in place by unidentified individuals who had "succeeded at their plan to not let me get on that stage tonight".

A statement issued by Live Nation on Saturday explained: "Despite Nicki's best efforts to explore every possible avenue to make tonight's show happen, the events of today have made it impossible," adding, "We are deeply disappointed by the inconvenience this has caused."

Trinidad-born Minaj, raised in the US and celebrated for hits such as Starships, Super Bass and Anaconda, even went live on social media about her arrest while emphasising that the discovered drugs did not belong to her.

This latest delay in performance at Co-op Live comes as another blow to the venue after multiple issues exposed since its attempt to launch in April, leading to several rescheduling of its first official gig.

US rapper A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie relocated his performance to the AO Arena due to the delays, and Co-op Live kicked off live music shows on May 14 with British rock band Elbow.

Co-op Live, Minaj and Live Nation have all been approached for further comment.