Dionne Warwick: You're About to be Served

Inaugural balls fallout continues

Dionne Warwick: You’re About To Be Served was originally published on City Desk on Jan. 22, 2009, at 4:03 pm

Editors have agreed: Dionne Warwick is my new beat. The fallout from the closing of the American Music Inaugural Balls is heating up! One very unsatisfied ticket holder is planning a lawsuit. He called in to WCP headquarters this afternoon. I was able to get the scoop.

Tony Reddick says he bought tickets to both balls spending more than $700 (includes service charges) and chartered a car to take him to the balls at the Marriott Wardman Park where the balls were being held. He says on the morning of the event, he checked the balls’ website to see if any more celebrities had been added to the bill. Instead, he found a cancellation noticed. He called the hotel which confirmed the bad news.

Reddick shelled out a lot of cash. He is still disappointed about the last-minute cancellation. “You can’t repay something you missed out on or your limo service or your airplane or hotel,” he says. “We were stuck out in the cold.”

Reddick notes that Warwick seemed to have a good time at someone else’s ball–the Purple Ball. She even took the time to smile before the cameras at the shindig while her fans were getting turned away at the Marriott. People rented cars to take them to the event. Valets had to break the news to them.

Reddick says he is “definitely” planning on filing a lawsuit. Right now he is seeking other victims for his case.

“I always looked to her as being a celebrity figure,” Reddick says. “I thought she would be able to draw people to her ball. I wrote to her website that I wanted a verbal apology. I want her to call my phone and say Mr. Reddick and say I’m sorry or get on national TV and say she’s sorry for what she did. A celebrity….they shouldn’t mistreat us like that.”

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Reddick has two questions for Ms. Warwick: “How come your psychic friends network didn’t tell her that she wasn’t going to sell no tickets? Where’s your network now?…She pretty much hustled us.”

Reddick says anyone who wants to be a part of the lawsuit can go to www.myspace.com/tonyreddick where he will be setting up a blog to gather info for his legal action. One victim has already written to Mr. Reddick. She writes:

“I am one of the many people who were jilted by the American Music Inaugural Ball cancellation. I am quite interested in filing a lawsuit. Words cannot describe how upset and hurt I was that evening. My father had been invited to the official balls downtown, but we chose not to purchase tickets because we had already purchased tickets to the AMIB. We even chose not to go down to the mall that morning because we didn’t want to be late to this event. All in all, our whole celebration of the historic moment of Obama’s presidency was ruined! RUINED!”

Seeking comment, I called the American Music Inaugural Ball’s phone number. The number’s voicemail box was full.

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