English chorus master is shamed in China for ‘not wearing knickers’

Report from Rudolph Tang in Beijing:

Magic Flute, a show created for children performed by the UK-based The Classic Buskers, was called off at the last minute by the Beijing Concert Hall where a performance had been scheduled for June 3rd.

Parents who attended a performance by The Classic Buskers in Shanghai on June 1st complained that Mr Ian Moore, a Cambridge organist and choir master who was playing the Queen of Night, went on stage apparently without wearing knickers under the short skirt.

Some parents sitting at the front rows left the City Theatre abruptly, taking their children with them and filed complaints to the press and the tour management. They demanded an apology from the troupe, and cancellation of it’s China tour.

According to several reports, Ian Moore apologized for his “forgetting to wear knickers after changing costume” in a video apology. But Beijing Concert Hall called off the performance, citing “unwellness of the performer”, and offering ticket refunds. The City Theatre also released an apology to the parents. Before the incident took place, the show had been running in China for three years.

We have asked The Classic Buskers for a response.

ian moore

picture from Chinese social media

UPDATE: ‘He was wearing something…’

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  • If this report is accurate, I wonder how it is possible for anyone actually to “forget” he is not wearing underwear under such a short skirt? And how does any male use the word “knickers” rather than underwear in a video apology? Is this merely a mistranslation?

  • I don’t know to what purpose the word ‘China’ made it into the headline.
    As if not wearing ‘knickers’ on stage were perfectly normal anywhere else?
    This blog and its fetish for nationalism, a never ending source of awkward entertainment.

  • I am the Classic Buskers’ general manager and just wanted to point out the facts here…
    The facts are that Ian had a quick costume change backstage and in his hurry he did not manage to cover himself properly. He was actually wearing pants, they were just very small. He had other pants that were bigger, which he normally wears with that outfit, but those are the ones he forgot. It was the first show of the tour, so jetlag didn’t help.

    He did not realise that he wasn’t fully covered until the show was over and is deeply embarrassed about this mistake. Steps have been taken to make sure that this will never happen again, as he has a much longer costume now and the rest of the tour is continuing.

    Ian is seriously mortified about this and it was just a horrible mistake. He has personally apologised to the few parents that were seated on the front row and complained at the time.

    • Totally agree! Not being prepared for a costume change should have absolutely nothing to do with jet lag once an artist is in performance ‘mode’. And having the wrong pants ready for any show let alone one for families and children is so wholly unprofessional. Yet, surely it is odd that the ‘new’ explanation does not quite match the offending performer’s own words?

  • On June 1st, 2016, parents who attended The Magic Flute, a show created for children performed by the UK-based The Classic Buskers in Shanghai complained that Mr Ian Moore, a Cambridge organist and chorus master who was playing the role of the Queen of Night, went on stage apparently without wearing underwear under the short skirt.

    Some parents sitting at the front rows left the City Theatre, taking their children with them and filed complaints after seeing Ian’s private exposed. They demanded an apology from the troupe, and cancellation of its China tour. As a result, its second performance scheduled for June 3rd was called off by the Beijing Concert Hall.

    As the Classic Buskers’ Chinese presenter, I have been working hard on the aftermath with the artists for the past six days since the terrible mistake occurred. We are truly sorry and fully responsible for what had happened on stage. We absolutely acknowledge the irrevocable damage the mistake has done to the parents and their children. Both Ian and we have made apology online and at the press conference immediately to the parents and their children the following morning.

    As our first priority, every possible measure has been taken to relieve the children from psychological stress or mental shock. Professional psychologists have been called in to offer consultation to the parents and their children. All the tickets for the performance in Beijing have been duly refunded following its cancellation. Full cooperation has been solicited to the law enforcement officials’ investigation into this matter. The fact that the parents who filed the complaints have accepted our apology was the little comfort as a remedy.

    Police investigation and Ian’s testimony revealed that it was during the last 10 minutes of the show when Ian rushed to the dim backstage to change costumes that he took off the long stockings worn in previous acts which were accidentally taken off with his underpants interwined together, and in a rush he changed to the short skirt with short stockings and continued the performance. After thorough investigation, the police deemed it a stage accident and believed that Ian did not constitute a crime.

    The show was cleared to go on for its remaining China tour. Costumes and changing procedures have been adjusted; short skirt is replaced by trousers to make sure what happened in Shanghai will not happen again. Both shows in Shenzhen and Guangzhou were sold-out and things went smoothly as we are deeply committed to it. Ian has overcome the pressure and is cheerful on stage as before. He is fondly referred to by children in China as “Mr Musical Bean”.

    WEN, from Classic Buskers’ China Presenter

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