August 29, 2018: Video Game Maker E.A. Cancels Esports Qualifier Events After Shooting, Aretha Franklin Mourned at Musical Public Viewing in Detroit, Ticketmaster Partners With Samsung To Help People Find Live Events

1. VIDEO GAME MAKER E.A. CANCELS ESPORTS QUALIFIER EVENTS AFTER SHOOTING: Video game maker Electronic Arts canceled its last three "Madden" qualifier events, following a shooting at an esports tournament in Jacksonville, Florida, in which three people including the gunman were killed. ESPN: "C.E.O. Andrew Wilson cited 'a comprehensive review of safety protocols for competitors and spectators' in a statement announcing the cancellations. 'We've all been deeply affected by what took place in Jacksonville,' Wilson said Monday night in the news release. 'This is the first time we've had to confront something like this as an organization, and I believe the first time our gaming community has dealt with a tragedy of this nature. Please take time to support each other through this challenging time.' Wilson pledged to 'work with our partners and our internal teams to establish a consistent level of security at all of our competitive gaming events.' The three events were scheduled to take place in Los Angeles, Dallas, and Chantilly, Virginia. In the statement, Wilson called the two men who were fatally shot—Taylor 'SpotmePlzzz' Robertson and Elijah 'Trueboy' Clayton—'two of our top Madden competitors.' Robertson was 27; Clayton was 22."

2. ARETHA FRANKLIN MOURNED AT MUSICAL PUBLIC VIEWING IN DETROIT: A public viewing for the late Aretha Franklin began Tuesday at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. The two-day viewing is part of a week of commemorations for Franklin, who died August 16 of pancreatic cancer at 76. Associated Press: "'Her dress—with its ornamental elements and sheer netting fabric—was reminiscent of an outfit she would wear onstage and ‘something she would have selected for herself,’ her niece, Sabrina Owens, told The Associated Press. The Wright Museum is a cultural landmark in Detroit, where Franklin grew up and spent most of her life. Museum board member Kelly Major Green said the goal was to create a dignified and respectful environment akin to a church, the place where Franklin got her start. ‘What we wanted to do is be reflective of the Queen,’ Green said. ‘It’s beautiful. She’s beautiful.’ Green said Franklin’s attire and pose communicated both power and comfort, as she did in life. The shoes, in particular, show ‘The Queen of Soul is diva to the end,’ Green said. Fans strolled by the casket, some in tears; one woman blew a kiss to Franklin, who was surrounded by massive arrangements of roses of different hues. … The roses that surround the casket, Owens said, reflected her love for the flower and her propensity to send arrangements ‘in grand fashion.’ Franklin was dressed in red, symbolic of her membership in the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. The service organization of predominantly black women planned a private ceremony Tuesday night in the museum in honor of Franklin. The setting for the viewings could not be more fitting, according to Paula Marie Seniors, an associate professor of Africana studies at Virginia Tech. ‘I think it’s incredibly significant—she is being honored almost like a queen at one of the most important black museums in the United States,’ said Seniors.”

3. TICKETMASTER PARTNERS WITH SAMSUNG TO HELP PEOPLE FIND LIVE EVENTS: Ticketmaster has partnered with Bixby, Samsung’s virtual assistant, to help fans discover and purchase tickets to live events with the help of Bixby’s voice technology. Billboard: “Powered by Ticketmaster’s API, Samsung Galaxy Note9 users will now be able to have a personalized experience by using the integration to ask for information about artists or teams, or location and event dates. The feature is simply activated by saying phrases like ‘Hi Bixby, find concert tickets in [city]’ or ‘Hi Bixby, what sporting events are happening in [city] this weekend?’ Bixby, in turn, will send results about the inquiry to the fan's Samsung device in order to select seats, confirm order details, and finalize ticket purchases. ‘Ticketmaster is constantly looking for new ways to make it easy for fans to discover events and buy tickets, and voice is an exciting technology,’ said Jared Smith, president of Ticketmaster. ‘We're excited about this partnership with Samsung because fans will see a personalized experience based on the artists, teams, and events that they love the most.’ Ticketmaster adds the Samsung Bixby integration to a list of collaborations with a wide range of third-party apps including Spotify, Groupon, Bandsintown, and more. Discovering and buying tickets with Ticketmaster through Bixby is currently available in North America, and is now live for users of the Samsung Galaxy Note9.”


CHICAGO:  See Chicago Dance’s annual Dance Community Celebration will take place September 25 at City Winery. 

LOS ANGELES:  The fourth annual Dreamstate SoCal trance festival, produced by Insomniac, will take place November 23-24 at the NOS Events Center in San Bernardino. 

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

MAUI, HAWAII:  Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa has completed a $2.65 million renovation that includes a revamped design of the property’s 508 guest rooms and suites; RockSalt, a new restaurant led by executive chef Lyndon Honda; and the renovated Ali’I Suite for weddings and honeymoons. 

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA:  Organizers have cancelled C2 Melbourne, the inaugural Australia conference that was slated to take place at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre in October. The announcement was posted on the event’s website a week after C2 International’s Asia Pacific C.E.O., Martin Enault, stepped down. 

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Miami Art Guide’s Gala: Cuban Artists against Censorship #NoAlDecreto349 will take place August 31 at Ocho Live Bar & Lounge. 

1 Hotel South Beach’s Haunted Hauteness Launch Party will take place September 8 on the hotel roof. The event serves as a lead-in to the main event, which will take place October 20 at Macaya Gallery. The Halloween party benefits Miami Model Citizens. 

NEW YORK:  Caitlin Kiernan, the author of Pretty Sick: The Beauty Guide for Women with Cancer, will launch the first-ever Cancer Wellness Expo September 29 at Urban Zen. The event will have speakers, pampering and wellness activities, and a cocktail party.

American Folk Art Museum’s Fall Benefit Gala will take place October 2 at Ziegfeld Ballroom. 

The Madison Square Garden Company has named Richard Constable executive vice president, global head of government relations and public affairs. Constable was previously senior vice president of government relations and commercial contracts at Wyndham Worldwide Corporation. 

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

ORLANDO/CENTRAL FLORIDA:  Trade show exhibit and event services provider Nimlok Orlando has launched a new brand, Rockway Exhibits and Events. The independent, full-service exhibit house will offer custom services and maintain a relationship with Nimlok for products such as modular system offerings, high-resolution dye sub fabric graphics, and fabric structures.  

TORONTO:  Toronto Sun: “For the first time in 15 years, SummerSlam will take place in Toronto. World Wrestling Entertainment’s massive summer event, which was last held at the Air Canada Centre in August 2004, will return on Sunday, August 11, 2019, the second of four consecutive nights of WWE wrestling at Scotiabank Arena as part of SummerSlam week.”

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Washington will host its first-ever Black Restaurant Week November 4-11. Washington City Paper:

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With contributions from Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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