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Latest News The Drum discourages any form of discrimination

The Drum discourages any form of discrimination

July 28th, 2014 3:43 pm

Following a conversation with the promoter of the Ebonies showcase which was to have been held Sun 24 Aug 2014, where the Rapper Bobi Wine (from Uganda) was to have appeared, we can confirm that The Drum has made it quite clear that he (Bobi Wine) was not welcomed at the Drum as a performer, audience, observer, etc.

Bobi Wine appearance and beliefs conflicts with The Drum ethical and equal opportunity policy. Our mission is to lead and facilitate the development, presentation and celebration of creative, performing, visual, participative and digital arts for the benefit of all our communities and in accordance with the law. In short, The Drum will not tolerate or condone any homophobic sentiments and lyrics at any time. And if an artist or individual was found to be in breach of our rules whilst on stage or in the building the show or performance will be terminated and person(s) ejected from the building.

The Drum operates on three levels a) General Programme b) Young People and Creative Learning including Young Gifted Brum and c) hire of surplus space and capacity to voluntary, public and private sectors. In this instance the Ebonies event was not programmed by the arts team but was a commercial hire by a promoter from Uganda who was keen to make the connection between the UK and Uganda. Unfortunately, and we make no apology for the promoter, Bobi Wine music and views are well known in Uganda but not in the UK. Therefore the level of scrutiny that applies to general programming must now be applied to commercial hires and rules will be implemented to ensure that this unfortunate situation does not reoccur. However, making honest and lasting connections with communities from Uganda and other countries has to be a positive approach and is welcomed because it fits with our intercultural art agenda – sharing between the UK, Africa, USA, South Asia, Caribbean, Europe, etc …

Over the past 20 years The Drum has positively worked with the vast range of cultural organisations, involving people from all corners of the globe and every section of our greater community in cultural activities that educate, inform, entertain, challenge and delight them and would discourage any form of discrimination including homophobia.

Charles Small – The Drum, CEO

  • Dale Tarrant

    Dear Charles. Will Rapper Bobi Wine be performing in the UK? Your post is not too clear on this point. The Drum making it “quite clear that he was not welcomed” does not state a clear decision on whether or not he is performing at the Drum on August 24, and even if he is not performing then, will he be performing elsewhere in the UK?

    • The_Drum_Birmingham

      Hi Dale,

      Bobi Wine will not be appearing in any capacity at The Drum, and would not be welcome due to the fact that his beliefs conflicts with The Drum ethical and equal opportunity policy. The Drum can only comment on behalf of our own venue, we do not know if he will be performing anywhere else in the UK as this is down to his management team and other venues.

      The Drum

  • DG

    Hi Charles,

    I’m really happy and impressed you have made this decision. Thank you for making your ethical and equal opportunities policy a business priority. I agree there needs to be more links between the UK and other communities in the world but this wasn’t it.

    All the best,

  • Rubaho

    Bobi is a Proud African – ready to identify with his culture and traditions. I don’t think anyone in his right state of mind should sacrifice his heritage for the sake of money. He has come this far without any input from the Drum and he will stay the course. That decision is really pathetic and exposes how insecure the gay culture is. Why would you starve people of information in a supposedly free and democratic country. Imagine if all PORK – eaters were denied visas to Dubai. You need to learn to be tolerant of the cultural diversity – maybe you think that some cultures are inferior. By exposing such tendencies, we may not be able to differentiate you from Al-shabab, NAZI’s, Boko- Haram, KKK and other groups of your ilk – Extremists! For now you keep your Pounds and he keeps his heritage.