The dance floor at Zouk Singapore cleared within five minutes after Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s son Norashman started his set on the turntable.
This is according to a freelance DJ, who was present at the club last Saturday when DJ Fila, who is one half of popular Egyptian trance duo Aly & Fila, was purportedly told to stop playing in order for Norashman to take the stage.
“The ‘VIP guest’ (Norashman) started his set with a classic trance song.
“After that, it sounded like radio hits and all of Fila’s fans pretty much left the club,” the 27-year-old freelance DJ, identified only as Nuwan, told Singapore’s New Paper.
“It was a privilege to have Fila play his set here, but instead, he was asked to share the stage with an amateur. This is truly a disgrace to the music community in Singapore,” he added.
Relating what transpired, another avid trance music fan Ray said he saw a group of people gathering behind the DJ booth at about 3.30am.
“One of them spoke to Fila. After about 10 minutes, he was spoken to again and he didn’t look pleased at all. He then grabbed the microphone and told the crowd that this was his last track,” said the financial analyst.
“Initially, we didn’t know what was going on but halfway through, we realised that he was being told to end his set and it was followed by lots of jeering.
“Almost everyone in the club was there just to hear Fila play his set but we were so shocked that he was chucked to the side just because some ‘VIP guest’ wanted to play,” he added.
Zouk regular Henry Soh, 45, said he saw the DJ storming out of the club immediately after.
“I wasn’t happy with the way Fila’s set ended. What was Zouk’s management thinking when they disrupted a guest DJ’s set just for a VIP?” he said, adding that he left after Norashman took over.
The incident became viral on social media when a video showing a furious DJ Fila telling the crowd that he has been told to stop his set for a prime minister’s son started circulating.
However, in a statement issued later, Zouk Singapore denied that DJ Fila was interrupted midway during their performance.
“Following up from our previous announcement pertaining to Aly & Fila’s gig at Zouk on Saturday night, Zouk would like to clarify that DJ Fadi (Fila) was not at any point of time asked to end his set prematurely before the contracted set end time of 3.30am,” it said.
Rizal Mansor, the aide to Norashman’s mother Rosmah Mansor, also denied that the prime minister’s son had forced DJ Fila to stop his set.
He said Norashman did not ask to perform at Zouk Singapore but went to the club on an invitation.
In a Facebook posting later, DJs Aly and Fila maintained that they were asked to stop their set to make way for Norashman.
Zouk was acquired by conglomerate Genting Hong Kong (Genting HK) last year for an undisclosed amount. While it is headquartered and listed in Hong Kong, with a secondary listing in Singapore, Genting HK is an affiliate of Malaysian conglomerate Genting Group, which Genting Singapore is a part of. – Malaysiakini