Cape Town – Afropunk ticket-holders took to Twitter on Wednesday to express their disappointment with organisers after American pop-icon Solange Knowles announced she will no longer be performing at the festival.
In a lengthy Instagram post, Knowles said she made the decision to cancel the trip "as part of the self-care" and confirmed that she's been battling Autonomic Disorder this past year.
Autonomic Disorder is a condition in which the autonomic nervous system (ANS) does not work properly, which can affect the heart, bladder, intestines, sweat glands, pupils, and blood vessels.
"It’s a complicated diagnosis, and I’m still learning so much myself, but right now, my doctors are not clearing me for such an extended lengthy flight, and doing a rigorous show right after," Knowles wrote.
It was unexpected:
While most Twitter-users expressed sympathy towards Knowles, others expressed anger with Afropunk who they say kept promoting Knowles despite supposedly knowing of her impending cancellation.
Afropunk has since released a statement saying: "It is with great concern that Afropunk received today the sudden news of Solange’s severe health struggles. We would like to thank Solange for her ongoing support, and for sharing this year with us at Afropunk festivals around the world. It is incredibly important to those of us at Afropunk that she recovers and remains in good health."
They added: "Her music and spirit has been a place of great comfort and inspiration to us as a community. And of course we are incredibly saddened that she will no longer be performing at the inaugural Afropunk Joburg this weekend."
Afropunk co-founder Matthew Morgan said that despite the unexpected bad news the festival will go ahead as planned.
@NandiJkj wrote: "I'm angry at @afropunk! I'm sad for Solange because she's unwell but you guys carried on promoting like you didn't know. You haven't even released a statement."
@obvszee agreed saying: " I’m pissed actually. Obviously it’s not Solange’s fault but you’re telling me Afropunk didn’t know till NOW?? I’m not buying that bullshit."
nah I’m pissed actually. obviously it’s not Solange’s fault but you’re telling me Afropunk didn’t know till NOW?? I’m not buying that bullshit— z ?? (@obvszee) December 27, 2017
"2017 had to pull one more "F***k you" at the last minute and take away Solange. Just to make us a Popeye one more time for consistency," @PalesaMaloisane said.
@palesakgasane said ticket holders have a right to be angry.
"Everyone saying "Solange's health comes first and you guys shouldn't be upset", please get off your high horses because this is sudden and people are allowed to be disappointed," she said.
Everyone saying "Solange's health comes first and you guys shouldn't be upset", please get off your high horses because this is sudden and people are allowed to be disappointed.— 'frosephine baker (@palesakgasane) December 27, 2017
According to their Facebook page, Afropunk is a "cultural movement celebrating the creativity and freedom of spirit in alternative Black culture".
In 2005, the very first annual AfroPunk Festival debuted to wildly enthusiastic crowds at the iconic Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM).
This year marks the first Afropunk event in Africa, and includes performances King Tha vs Blk Jks, Laura Mvula, The Brother Moves On, Petite Noir, Nakhane, Urban Village, Nonku Phiri and Radio 123!.
Afropunk Johannesburg is set to take place on 30 and 31 December 2017 at Constitution Hill.