Cell Phone-Wielding Fans Ejected From Detroit Prince Concert; 'I Cried All Night Over It'
DETROIT (WWJ) - The entertainment event of the season unfolded in Detroit Thursday night when Prince performed a spectacular, marathon show at a sold-out Fox Theatre after an 11 year absence.
While many were raving about the concert a day later, it left a bad taste in the mouths of some fans who were kicked out over Prince's strict "no cell phones" concert policy.
Fans were warned before the show began to leave their phones off during the show or be expelled.
Heather Cox of Port Clinton, Ohio, said she arrived a little late, missed the warning, and simply had her phone in her hand when a security guard approached and told her and her boyfriend they had to leave.
Ironically, toward the end of the show, Prince told fans they could take their phones out. Hundreds of photos and videos of the "1999" portion of the show were shared on social media.
"That makes me so upset," Cox told WWJ's Sandra McNeill, through tears. "Because...I mean, the concert had started 30 seconds before. I was not even to my seat, and had my phone in my hand, and the man kicked me out.
"I don't understand the security guards... I don't know if they were his guards, or the guards of the theater, but they were over-zealous, I believe."
Cox said she drove two hours, spent $800 on tickets, and didn't take any pictures.
"They didn't take into account the money that people spent for that concert. I wasn't in there trying to do a photo shoot; I was in there trying to see the concert, you know?"
"I cried all night over it," she added. "I'm a huge fan and I don't have money like that. This was a big treat. This was like birthday, Christmas, everything for this year."
A fan since age eight, Candice Fortman, who did get to see the show, shed tears for a different reason.
"Oh my God, like, I lost my mind," Fortman said. "Literally, I've been crying. I cried during Purple Rain...tears had to fall out of my eyes! It was happening! I've been waiting to see this man forever, and here it was happening! It was unreal."
Coming back for several encores, Prince didn't leave the stage until after midnight. The singer ran through just about every hit in his 30-plus year career, plus covers from other stars including Michael Jackson.
"And when he said keep Detroit beautiful, and stay beautiful, it was such a great message. That's something that this audience needed to hear," Fortman said.
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