R. Kelly’s current tour is on the rocks and his relationship with his agent is too following allegations that the R&B singer is operating a sex cult, Billboard has learned.
The 51-year-old Chicago singer has completed three dates of The After Party Tour, a jaunt that’s been dogged by a report from BuzzFeed that the singer is holding women captive and controlling every aspect of their lives in an alleged sex “cult.” While some of the women allegedly held captive had denied the claims, several victims’ parents have described the young women as “brainwashed.”
So far, four dates on the tour have been canceled, some because of poor ticket sales. The drop-off has reportedly created a rift between R. Kelly and his booking agent, Ron Kaplan at Monterey International’s Chicago office. When asked if he still represented R. Kelly, Kaplan told Billboard “no comment” and referred Billboard to Kelly’s attorney Linda S. Mensch. Mensch in turn referred Billboard to R. Kelly’s publicist Trevian Kutti, who has not responded to request for comment.
On Monday night, four venues canceled R Kelly tour dates: UNO Lakefront Arena (Aug. 11) in New Orleans; Raising Cane’s River Center Arena (Aug. 12) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Music Hall at Fair Park (Aug. 13) in Dallas; and Microsoft Theatre (Oct. 6) at L.A. Live. One booker at a venue that canceled the show told Billboard sales had ground to a halt since the new allegations of sexual abuse surfaced.
The After Party Tour is being individually promoted in each market, and several talent buyers for upcoming shows told Billboard that sales aren’t great but that, for now, they are still scheduled to go forward. The next concert is scheduled for the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort (Friday) in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. According to the ticket map for the page, the majority of tickets appear to be sold but there were still plenty left in each of the venue’s 14 different seating sections.