Frank Ocean, the celebrated musician, has announced the unfortunate cancellation of his eagerly awaited second performance at Coachella this weekend. The news comes in the aftermath of his first live show in six years, which left many of his loyal fans feeling let down and bewildered.
According to sources close to the artist, he sustained a leg injury during the first week of Coachella, resulting in the decision to cancel the upcoming performance. This unforeseen setback has caused a great deal of disappointment among his devoted followers, who are now keeping their fingers crossed for his swift and full recovery.
As per the musician’s representative, the singer has been advised by medical professionals not to perform again due to sustaining two fractures and a sprain in his left leg.
Ocean said: “It was chaotic. There is some beauty in chaos. It isn’t what I intended to show but I enjoy being out there and I’ll see you soon.” Blink-182 is lined up to take Ocean’s headlining spot, reports have revealed.
Frank Ocean’s headlining performance at Coachella last Sunday marked his return to the stage after a six-year hiatus. However, the highly-anticipated show didn’t go as smoothly as fans had hoped. The singer-songwriter’s performance was shrouded in uncertainty and controversy, with rumours circulating that he may not even show up. The situation was exacerbated by YouTube’s last-minute announcement that his set would not be live-streamed, unlike those of the previous headliners, like Blackpink and Bad Bunny.
When Ocean finally appeared on stage after an hour-long delay in the schedule, he seemed almost invisible, with his hood pulled up and his back turned to the audience. While he did perform some mesmerising renditions of his popular tracks, including ‘Novacane,’ ‘Crack Rock,’ and ‘White Ferrari,’ the long pauses between songs and his decision to lip-sync many of them left fans feeling disconnected and underwhelmed.
Ocean also surprised fans by bringing out a young piano player to lip-sync one of his songs, which he explained was meant to represent his “inner child,” and then DJ Crystallmess played an extended EDM remix of a bunch of his songs while Ocean left the stage. The performance concluded abruptly, with the singer citing the festival’s curfew as the reason for the early end to his set.
After Ocean performed a cover of ‘At Your Best (You Are Love),’ he announced at midnight following another long and awkward silence, “Guys, I’m being told it’s curfew, so that’s the end of our show. Thank you so much.” Confusion turned to rage and disappointment as fans realised that this lacklustre performance was all the singer was going to give them, and that his own tardiness had caused him to cut his set short.
Recent reports have surfaced since then, indicating that the ‘Ivy’ hitmaker’s Coachella performance was originally intended to take place on a specially constructed ice rink, surrounded by more than 100 skaters. However, just hours before the show, the stage had to be dismantled as it became clear that Ocean’s injury would prevent him from safely performing on the ice. Instead, 30 of the skaters, decked out in custom Prada outfits and striking face paint, took to the stage.
Dan and Chris Powers, former hockey players and brothers who were hired to skate in the performance, have revealed that they along with around 120 other skaters had spent a month rehearsing for the show in Los Angeles. They even participated in a successful dress rehearsal at Coachella, only to be told just hours before the performance that their services were no longer required. This must have been a significant disappointment for the skaters, who had put in a lot of effort and preparation for what promised to be a unique and unforgettable show.
“Those figure skaters got cut not because there was an ice issue, not because there was something wrong,” Dan Powers said on the brothers’ podcast, Empty Netters. “There was no malfunction. [Ocean] just straight-up was like, ‘F**k this. I’m not doing this any more.’ And [to] these 120 people [he] had bused out here, he was just like, ‘You guys aren’t doing sh*t now.’ So it was just like a wild flip.”
According to the brother-duo, they had a surreal encounter with some figure skaters when they arrived for wardrobe and makeup. The Olympians, who appeared disgruntled, had just received a call informing them that they had been cut from the show. This news left the brothers feeling uneasy and questioning what was going on.
In their own words, the brothers said, “You’re saying goodbye to these skaters, but a bunch of dipsh*t former hockey players are gonna go up on that stage and buzz around? So we’re already getting bad vibes here.” They went on to reveal that they had been informed at 4pm that organisers were trying to “undercover rip out this ice rink stage because they don’t want anyone to know it was there.”
Despite the unexpected turn of events, both Dan and Chris Powers had nothing but positive things to say about Frank Ocean’s commitment during rehearsals. As per Chris, Ocean was heavily invested in the production and had a clear vision for the performance. “He really cares about the production,” he said. “Even though that vision changed a lot, he was always on us, helping us, making sure everyone hit what he was picturing in his mind.”
As of now, Ocean and his representatives have not commented on the original plans for the show or the reasons behind the last-minute changes. It’s worth noting that the acclaimed singer-songwriter has been relatively quiet in recent years, with his last album, Blonde, released back in 2016. In 2020, he did release two new tracks, ‘Dear April’ and ‘Cayendo‘, but fans have been eagerly anticipating a full-length album for some time now.