Holders of 'tickets' listed on Carousell turn up at Esplanade, find out show doesn't exist
They were expecting to see a show called The Final Countdown.
A concert by 1980s metal band Europe perhaps? They had a massive international hit in 1986 with their iconic song The Final Countdown.
Stomp user Eddie said: "The 'ticket' said ages 20 and above only. So I was thinking it might be some stand-up comedy show like Kumar."
But the joke was on them as the ticket holders arrived at the Esplanade on Wednesday only to find a locked theatre with nary a Swedish rocker with big hair or cross-dressing comedian in sight.
Eddie recounted: "At around 6pm, many people were seen waiting outside Singtel Waterfront Theatre, holding the ticket as seen in the picture."
The photo the Stomper shared shows what looks like a genuine ticket for The Final Countdown by Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay at the recently opened Singtel Waterfront Theatre on Wednesday, Oct 12, 2022, at 6.11pm.
"All the entrances to the theatre were locked and no staff was present." continued Eddie.
"We tried calling the customer service number but no one picked up. A security guard came to inform us to come back at 7.50pm.
"Finding something amiss, we went over to the Esplanade box office. The lady at the counter mentioned that the ticket could be fake. Unable to help, she asked another lady in the back office.
"This lady explained to the four of us that this is not a real ticket. It was given out by Esplanade during one of its previous events and some others who received the ticket from their company.
"When asked about the purpose of this piece of paper that looked like a ticket, the staffer said it was a keepsake that was attached to a notebook."
Eddie told Stomp that his tickets were given by a neighbour, who received the tickets but could not attend.
"Who would have thought that this was fake when there are actually people selling them on Carousell?" asked the Stomper.
The tickets were listed for sale at $50 and $88 on Carousell.
"There’s also no word like 'specimen' or 'sample' printed on the ticket," said Eddie.
"This marketing campaign has misled many poor elderly people who were hoping to watch a show that doesn’t even exist."
The Stomper said there was also a "pregnant lady".
In response to a Stomp query, an Esplanade spokesman said: "We are aware of the situation and have provided assistance and explained to the patrons who had mistakenly turned up at our premises on Wednesday.
"Please allow us to share that the 'tickets' that they were holding were actually notebooks that were specially produced and given out for free at our Singtel Waterfront Theatre's Trial & Orientation programme which took place earlier in September for invited guests.
"The cover of the notebook was designed to look like a mock show ticket, but it is not a real ticket. On the first page of the notebook was a thank you note which specified that the information printed in the artwork featured on the cover of the notebook contains 10 secret codes related to Esplanade and the new waterfront theatre.
"When we were alerted to listings made available by users on Carousell, we immediately wrote to the platform. As the users were trying to sell the notebook as a ticket to a non-existent performance, we had requested for Carousell's assistance to remove the listings to avoid misleading any potential buyers.
"They responded to say that their users are allowed to buy and sell freely as long as it does not violate their guidelines, and that it is the buyer's responsibility to check on the validity of their purchase.
"To verify, you may also head to Esplanade's website and have a look at our events listed for Oct 12. There is no show titled The Final Countdown listed for that date.
"It was definitely not our intention to mislead patrons into purchasing tickets for a performance that did not exist. But rather, this notebook was meant to be a memento for guests who attended a by-invite-only performance."