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Rave organizer sues Los Angeles over show cancellation

Rave The organizer of a June rave that ended with a death is suing the city of Los Angeles for canceling an upcoming show.

Insomniac Inc. had scheduled an October concert at the Los Angeles Convention Center, featuring Tiesto, a popular electronic dance music DJ. A company official said the contract was terminated earlier this month.

Company founder Pasquale Rotella compared the city’s restrictions to “Footloose,” a 1980s film based around a town that bans dancing.

“This is a concert, and it should be treated in the same manner as any other concert held in Los Angeles,” he said in a statement.

The organizer’s premier annual event, the Electric Daisy Carnival at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, ended in tragedy last June when a 15-year-old girl died from a suspected drug overdose. The minimum age for the event was 16.

Widespread use of Ecstasy was reported at the two-day dance party. The artist scheduled to perform in the canceled October event is within the same genre of electronic dance music.

-- Robert Faturechi

Photo: Thousands of revelers packed the Electric Daisy Carnival in June. The party was marred by drug usage and gate crashers. Credit: Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (25)

Thank you for suing LA over canceling my concert. I saw Tiesto every time he visited and put on a great show. It is unfair that my favorite style of live music events is being targeted because some participants do not party responsibly. Even if they do chose to endanger their lives, their actions do not put other party goers in danger due to the nature of the drug. They are not violent and I feel safer at an electronic performance then I do at a comic con. A drugged out raver is still a safer person than a pissed off nerd at a comic con. There were no assaults or pencil stabbed in the eye type incidents at the recent rave events.

Per usual, reactionary "precautionary" measures like canceling concerts or beefing up enforcement and security are only taken AFTER a tragedy occurs.

Good. The organizer is blatantly irresponsible and should not be allowed to conduct business as such.

This isn't about "feelings" CryingTiestoFan, geez.

they should make the minimum age to 18 and check ID's. plus, it bothers me when I'm around stupid teens that party like it's the last time they are gonna. PARTY Responsibly, kick out the kids, & none of this will happen to your fav. events

the onslaught against electronic culture continues

Man, if people only knew the stuff Pasquale did back in the day in the underground. Scary dude.

@ Eve: How is the organizer responsible? They did what they had to, hired security and set an age limit. What else are they supposed to do, check each person who attends personally? People who attend any sort of event are responsible for their own actions and decisions.

At almost ALL large events, people do stupid things. Concerts, Rally's, etc. Just because someone overdosed at a 'Rave' doesn't mean raves should be banned. How about checking ID's, etc to insure that underage, irresponsible, immature kids don't go?
Canceling a musical event is censorship, anti-american and invades our right to congregate (with a permit of course). Glad they are suing. They should stand up to their rights. And the rights of all Americans.
Fear leads to totalitarian type reactions from the government. WE ARE AMERICA.... remember that all you anti-freedom fear mongers! FREEDOM!

Good, they are not going to win obviously, and to tell you the truth these stupid events are a huge inconvenience for all of Los Angeles. In the surrounding south central neighborhoods numerous complaints where made at community meetings about noise, parking, crowds, and drug use on the streets. These raves where known in the nineties when I was a kid for being hotspots for teens to go "party" and use Ecstasy, and I am pretty sure they were illegal and would constantly get shut down.

@EVE - No, the promoter is not "blatantly irresponsible". The event in question had more than enough security, more than the required medical personel, and followed every guideline they are required to. It is the people who attend these events who are to be called blatantly irresponsible. Just like any other concert/event you may go to, drugs will always be present and if those persons cannot partake responsibly, then that is there fault and no one else's. And yes, I know the girl was only 15 that died, but when hasn't someone fooled security with a fake i.d.? It happens all the time.

@ Los angeles Promoter/Photographer;

Absolutely! Just as everyone entering a nightclub is checked personally. Just as cashiers do before selling alcohol. A bar owner is held responsible for the patrons they serve. So should the promoters of this event.

If the establishment has set an age limit, then age should be checked before access is granted. Seems very simple to me. And if indeed the promoters paid for security - they got SCREWED.

Teenagers are infamous for doing stupid things that's WHY adults need to look out for them. It is EVERY person's job to watch out for our children. They ARE the future. And those who choose to turn a blind eye or remove themselves from those duties are nothing more than stupid children as well.

Shame on ANYONE who allows greed to put our children at risk.

@ Hamster-Style

It's my opinion, like it or not. And I'll bet there's many out there who feel as I do.

Who do you think would be responsible if a child sports a fake ID to patronize a bar, ODs on alcohol and dies. The bar would be.

Who do you think is responsible if a child climbs a fence a drowns in a neighbors pool? The pool owner. Why? Because they're the ones who installed the pool, thus creating a potentially hazardous environment. I didn't make the rules.

The bottom line is, the establishment has the right to deny service to anyone. If age is even SOMEWHAT questionable, access should not be granted.

People need to stop pimping our kids. This event certainly wasn't designed lure the senior citizens, now was it?

Good, sue LA they deserve it. Trying to ban a specific genre of music/ group of people is unconstitutional. I hope they have to pay every penny to Insomniac.

This is ridiculous, you cannot blame the concert organizers for letting a girl under 16 in, you should blame the parents for letting her go.

Who cares about one teenage girl being dumb enough to OD? She would've done it at a friend's house party if she didn't die that night. Canceling events due to the ill-preparedness & lack of wisdom from a select few is just stupid.

FINALLY The City did something right!!! These Idiot promoters are just crazy! Insomniac needs to SHUT IT and deal with the consequences.

Im tired of al these raves that are not regulated... and let me tell you I Love Tiesto but not at the cost of another death.

I dont recall the last time anyone overdosed at another concert in LA. it only happens in raves.

Good Job City of LA.

let the teens party!

This promoter has always tried to low ball city, venues, and security agencies. Safetyis not his biggest concern. He wants the city to treat it like a concert. However, that is not this event is.

They condone drug use. Theyve had people raped at The National Orangeshow in the lawn in front of others that were also lit up on E. And if you wonder how I know this..........it's because I've been to many of these events. The amount of drugs confiscated BEFORE people even enter the venues is insane. And the venues should be held responsible for allowing promoters to throw these events.

Venue Representatives AND promoters have been arrested for allowing venues to condone drug use. The National Orangeshow is one of these venues. They should begin to cite and even arrest Venue reps and the promoter once they determine the venue is a drug habitat.

People need to look into their laws. A child died. There is no accountability. Good for LA in blocking his event. I'm sure the idiots at The Orangeshow will take the event on with open arms since they are known as the venue that takes in all the drug condoned event in the industry.

But I guess you would too if you lived in a terrible city like San Bernardino.

I don't even know where to start. If the drug use was so rampant at EDC why is it that only one girl died out of a reported 185,000 attendees? Yes ecstasy is used commonly at raves, and yes it is a dangerous drug, but think of it this way.... who are the drug users hurting other than themselves? More people get killed at rap concerts in shootings and fights than ever will at raves, so why not ban rap concerts?
Peace. Love. Unity. Respect.
What would the world be like when you subtract PLUR? Violence. Hate. Racism. Intolerance. I'm all for more restrictions, but don't cancel the shows altogether.

L.A should come to europe and learn how these type of events are organised here. The city should work on prevention, safety, medical support, etc. Drugs will always be there, on any type of event. Canceling events will always work out the other way. And dont forget, thousands of people dont take drugs on these events, they come for the music and now they are treated like criminals because they like a certain music style.

This is ridiculous. It is discrimination again electronic music events.

@AllHallowsEve People are not checked personally at clubs... the search at a club (if there is one) is NOT more thorough than one at a rave. I guarantee it.

As much as this news upsets and bothers me, we need to look at this as the "end result" created when a select few individuals within a group or subculture decide that they are going to do whatever they choose, without considering the greater impact -- on themselves, and on the image and standing of the group. Eventually, tolerance levels among the mainstream, "default" world (to include city officials) are going to go out the window, and things like event permits are going to go with them. I've seen this before, within the Goth and Fetish subcultures; in both cases, we started losing events and venues thanks to a small, core group of people who chose to screw around and act like a bunch of self-entitled fools. So, in closing, it's not all the city's fault -- the rave culture needs to understand this, and to perhaps take a look in the mirror and make some changes.

Lets consider the different perspectives that are going into this situation.

The primary issue seems to be the incident with the 15 year old girl at EDC. I don't understand why so much emphasis is being put on this. Yes, the death is tragic, but unoriginal at any type of concert. Therefore, blaming Insomniac (the promoting company) for such an incident is not proper.

Also, if such incidents occur at other concerts as well, why doesn't Los Angeles cancel other types of concerts? Electric Daisy Carnival attracted over 185,000 people. It seems to me that electronica is no longer an experimental subculture and should not be treated as such, which is the case here. City officials seek to make a case of an "upcoming" issue because they can no longer sufficiently control established institutions, such as a rock concert.

For those doubting the security, there was both security and medical personnel present. Insomniac wasn't as "blatantly irresponsible" as some profess. People were checked as they entered.

@All Hallows Eve
On the other hand, I agree that there must be some accountability for the incident and I understand the reasons to hold Insomniac responsible. Cancelling the concert, however, is not the proper or most conscientious punishment. Rarely, if never before, have whole concerts been cancelled based on just one prior incident. Such unforgiving punishment is ridiculous. And for those that believe this is fair, why not cancel all other concerts as well? Because someone has overdosed at those concerts as well.

@Let's Put This In Perspective!
Poster is correct. Such a reaction is out of proportion to the incident. I agree that more limitations should be put in place, such as a higher age limit, but cancelling these events altogether is just an utterly ridiculous response.

It's irrelevant where the 15 year old girl was when she died due to use of drugs. If anything her parents (or guardians) should be held solely responsible as neglectful parents.

I think until you turn 18 years old your parents should have to be 100% responsible for their child's actions...... Not many if any 16 year old kids have jobs and buy their own first cars. Parents who provide a vehicle for their sweet 16's cause a more dangerous situation to the public than the Rave scene and Rave drugs.

Out of control Ravers kill themselves

Out of control teen drivers kill others

If all concerts that people die at are disallowed, what concerts will remain?


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