Cancellation Fee Controversy: Gregory Charles Royal Responds to Criticism AYS Issued $160,000 in Cancellation Fees to 400 Groups

Share Article Cancellation Fee Controversy: Gregory Charles Royal Responds to Criticism AYS Issued $160,000 in Cancellation Fees to 400 Groups

American Youth Symphony (AYS), who produces the Off-Broadway jazz play It's a Hardbop Life, issued cancellation fee invoices yesterday to some 400 groups, totaling about $160,000. This move has sparked irate responses from the group organizers. AYS Artistic Director Gregory Charles Royal has issued this statement regarding the controversy:

"American Youth Symphony regrets the anger and frustration that some in the community have expressed over the cancellation fees for our play It's a Hardbop Life. However, we take great exception to characterizations in the many emails sent to us that these groups have somehow been scammed or otherwise treated unfairly by us.

"First, our offer for free admission to the production was reviewed and approved by Meetup Inc. who then presented the offer to the groups though their platform. Meetup Inc. clearly would not have offered this to the groups, again after having reviewed and approved it, if they believed it was not proper.

"Second, the offer was not an advertisement but a contract offer which required that each group organizer accept it or decline it by clicking through the agreement.

"Third, the Terms clearly state that by accepting the offer the groups were accepting a set number of tickets which must be used within a set period of time or a cancellation fee, equal to the face value of each unused ticket, would apply.

"In summary, our organization set out to offer a great free perk to the Groups. All we asked in return was that if the groups accepted the tickets, that they at least attend.

"Fortunately, some groups did take advantage of the offer and their attendance was greatly appreciated and valued.

"Unfortunately, many other groups have mistaken a contract providing free admission to our event for a license to treat the performance cavalierly and without regard and are now appalled at the forewarned consequences. We submit that those groups should consider the feeling of the performers who were greatly disappointed by their absence."


Free Admission Off-Broadway Jazz Play "It's a Hardbop Life"-Thru May 5
By Accepting this PERK the Group is accepting a total of 20 (twenty) free admission tickets which must be used in any combination by May 5, 2011 for Thursday evening performances.

Organizers simply email info(at)americanyouthsymphony(dot)org with the number of group members who will be attending on a particular Thursday (3/10 thru 5/5) and tickets will be held at the Box Office under the Group Name for that date(s)

NO PAYMENT IS REQUIRED TO RECEIVE TICKETS-- There is a NO-CANCELLATION POLICY subject to the face value of each ticket ($20.00)--

This free admission offer is available for THURSDAY EVENING 10:30PM PERFORMANCES ONLY.

ABOUT THE PLAY- "It's a Hardbop Life", the first play to feature a cast of jazz musicians, is running at the Producers Club in midtown Manhattan. The play, which depicts familiar characters in the fledgling jazz musician and his wealthy girlfriend- with tints of Lee Morgan- is geared to jazz savvy audiences and boasts a club-like late night Thursday evening schedule (10:30PM). The play was written by and stars former Duke Ellington Orchestra and Broadway's Five Guys Named Moe trombonist Gregory Charles Royal . Also starring is Marvel Comics' Spider Woman Jolynn Carpenter.

Joe Milligan, who won tickets to the performance from WBGO JAZZ 88.3FM raves that the play was "[an] absolutely fabulous show, great story line with a surprise ending, [and] a must see for jazz lovers".

Set in 1964 New York, It's a Hardbop Life is tragedy about a jazz trombone player named Q. (Royal) and his wealthy girlfriend Julie's (Carpenter) struggle over his artistic ethics and her shallow desire for singing fame. This all happening on the day of Q.'s band Hardbop's debut performance at the Jazz Corner Nightclub.

LOCATION and TIME and INFO-- The Producers Club 358 West 44th Street NYC 10036 (202) 302-6703 Running Time: 1 hr. (no intermission) --


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