Troupe steps on wrong toes, dances its way back to the US

Published: November 23, 2011
Departure comes days after group was detained for capturing ‘sensitive footage’. PHOTO: REUTERS

Departure comes days after group was detained for capturing ‘sensitive footage’. PHOTO: REUTERS


If they thought they could dance their way around Pakistani authorities, they thought wrong.

The hip-hop group visiting from America going by the name FEW Collective was forced to return home on Tuesday amid reports of “non-cooperation” from federal as well as provincial governments, intelligence agencies and law enforcement departments, sources familiar with the matter told The Express Tribune.

The troupe which was scheduled for two more performances before its departure on November 24, had to exit the country prematurely when organisers refused to host their shows due to interference from influential quarters, sources said. A very disappointed FEW Collective left Pakistan from Lahore’s Allama Iqbal International Airport on Tuesday.

The Hip-Hop group’s departure comes just days after they were briefly taken into custody by authorities in Islamabad for “capturing footage of sensitive areas”. Despite deleting the footage from their cameras almost immediately, and being released an hour after being detained, it was obvious that the troupe had rubbed the authorities the wrong way.

US Consulate General Information Officer Leslie Goodman, speaking to The Express Tribune, said they had obtained a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the foreign affairs ministry prior to the group’s show at Alhamra, adding that they had even informed the police about the event. Despite that, “just two hours before the show, we were informed it was cancelled” due to undisclosed reasons.

Goodman refused to comment any further on the circumstances under which the show was cancelled.

Edited by Saarysh Zuberi

Published in The Express Tribune, November 23rd, 2011.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • AAhmed
    Nov 23, 2011 - 10:12AM

    This is called passive aggressive behavior exhibited by Pakistanis.


  • Ishrat Salim
    Nov 23, 2011 - 1:29PM


  • Cautious
    Nov 23, 2011 - 7:45PM

    It’s a combination of bad manners and petty harassment – it reflects badly on Pakistan. This was suppose to be a cultural exchange – a good will gesture on behalf of the USA — you should have simply said “Thanks but no Thanks” rather than respond like a petulant child.


  • MBN
    Nov 23, 2011 - 8:37PM

    As usual we try to show the world who’s boss…being the delusional paranoid control freaks that we are.

    (WE being the establishment)


  • hamza khan
    Nov 23, 2011 - 10:24PM


    shouldnt have been taking pictures of the islamabad airport and other sensitive areas. no self respecting country will let foreigners do that. that has nothing to do with the ‘establishment.’


  • Clarity
    Nov 24, 2011 - 2:56AM

    MM… They actually flew to Karachi for more performances… Who does your reporting??


  • Nadir
    Nov 24, 2011 - 3:18AM

    How many Army officer and intelligence cheif kids were present at Kuch Khass for their performance?


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