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Organizers Put Timberlake Concert Cancellation Rumors to Rest

Published: April 4, 2014 (Issue # 1804)



  • Timberlake's Russian visa has been granted and is set to perform in St. Petersburg in May.
    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Despite earlier rumors of cancellations, U.S. singer Justin Timberlake has been granted a visa and confirmed to perform in St. Petersburg in May, reported Interfax Thursday. Quoting a statement by Planet Plus, the entertainment company bringing Timberlake to Russia, the U.S. pop star will perform twice in Russia - first in St. Petersburg on May 15 and then in Moscow on May 17. "Tickets for Justin's concerts have almost sold out. Everything is going ahead as planned," said a spokesperson for Planet Plus, reported Interfax.

However, Timberlake's upcoming concert in Finland may violate U.S. sanctions imposed on members of President Vladimir Putin's inner circle for their role in Russia's annexation of the Crimean peninsula last month, a news report said Thursday.

U.S.-based promoter Live Nation has booked Helsinki's Hartwall Arena for concerts for both Timberlake and U.S. singer Miley Cyrus in the coming months, but the sanctions theoretically ban the organizer from making payments to the company that owns the venue because it belongs to three blacklisted businessmen, The Financial Times reported.

London-based lawyer Anthony Woolich said that the legality of the concerts would probably depend on whether LiveNation payed venue-owner Arena Events Oy, which belongs to Gennady Timchenko and Arkady and Boris Rotenberg, before the sanctions was published.

Live Nation said it is currently reviewing its portfolio to make sure sanctions are upheld, while Roman Rotenberg, who manages the assets of his father Boris and uncle Arkady in Finland, said that there had been no signs of cancellations and asked: "Why should the Finnish people suffer from US sanctions? The concerts are sold out."

Roman Rotenberg, a Finnish citizen, added that the sanctions had caused "some tension" in the family members' business dealings as they need to use banks that are not connected to the United States.

The U.S. sanctions have caused confusion as to how American entities should conduct business with enterprises owned by individuals on the blacklist. Last month, credit card companies Mastercard and Visa stopped processing payments for SMP Bank, which is partly owned by Arkady and Boris Rotenberg, but later resumed transactions as neither of the brothers owned more than 50 percent of the institution.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Thursday, Aug. 28


Learn more about the citys upcoming municipal elections during the presentation of the project Road Map for the Municipal Elections being presented this evening in the conference hall on the third floor of Biblioteka at 21 Nevsky Prospekt. Steve Kaddins, a coordinator for Beautiful St. Petersburg, which gives residents an online forum to lodge complaints about infrastructure problems in the city, will be on hand to answer any questions. The meeting starts at 7 p.m. and is open to all.



Friday, Aug. 29


Park Pobedy will feature the sights and sounds of the world outside of Russia during the Open Art International Festival today. Taste foreign cuisine, learn how to make tea like the Chinese or relax in a hammock during the free event. Although entrance is free, you must register beforehand if you wish to attend.



Saturday, Aug. 30


Break out the tweed and channel your inner Englishman during the English Hunt Picnic this afternoon organized by the Bagmut stables from Krasny Bor in the Leningrad Oblast. Equestrian stunts, English archery and classic hunting fashion will all be available to visitors hoping to live like the characters in Downton Abbey if only for a day. Tickets for the event cost 7,900 rubles ($219.40).


Bookworms will have their chance to swap out well-read classics for something new for their bookshelves at Knigovorot, a free book exchange that will be held in the Yusupov Garden on Sadovaya Ulitsa today. Come for the chance to get a new book or take the opportunity to discuss the literary merits of your favorite authors with fellow fans.



Sunday, Aug. 31


The Neva Delta International Blues Festival wraps up this afternoon on Vasilevsky Island with a concert featuring not only some of Russias best blues bands but international stars as well. Admission is free for all three days of the festival, which begins on Aug. 29, and the shows starting at 5 p.m. each day.



Monday, Sept. 1


Today marks the beginning of Lermontov-Fest, a fall festival celebrating the life of one of Russias most remarkable poets who, in a fate eerily similar to Pushkins, was killed in a duel at the age of 26. Organized by the Lermontov Library System, the next several months will see art exhibitions, concerts and public lectures focusing on the Lermontovs short yet prolific career. Check the Lermontov Library Systems website for more details.



Tuesday, Sept. 2


Join expats and practice your Russian during the Russian Clubs weekly meetings every Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. The club is free to participate in although you need to be a registered member of Couchsurfing.



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