No more live performances at Blu Jaz Cafe from Feb. 1, 2019
It might close down.
Popular live music cafe Blu Jaz Cafe’s appeal against the cancellation of its public entertainment licence was rejected on Dec. 31, 2018.
It will no longer be able to provide live music from Feb. 1, 2019.
The cafe lost its licence in August 2018 as a result of repeatedly overcrowding its premise and having accumulated 24 demerit points within a 24-month period.
According to the police, Blu Jaz Cafe’s second floor — where its live performances are held — has an approved occupancy rate of 30 persons.
However, the police found that the cafe accommodated more than 150 people on April 28, and more than 200 people on May 5.
Overcrowding poses safety risks, especially in the case of a fire. A stampede can also occur if there is a need for evacuation.
The cancellation of its licence prompted a petition from the local arts community, which was supported by Nathan Hartono, Aya Sekine, and Sharul Channa among others.
Blu Jaz’s appeal was rejected by the Public Entertainment Appeal Board (PEAB), an independent board comprising representatives from the legal, social, business, and health sectors.
According to the police, PEAB took into account the cafe’s contribution to the local arts scene, it’s track records, remedial actions, and severity of the overcrowding offence.
Blu Jaz Cafe will still be able to operate as a cafe but it cannot provide live entertainment of any sort from February 2019.
Last October, owner Aileen Tan said the outlet would have to close if its appeal failed, as rents were high and the business may not be sustainable without entertainment.
Here’s the full statement by the Police:
The Public Entertainment Appeal Board (PEAB), an independent board comprising senior representatives from the legal, social, business and health sectors, rejected on 31 Dec 2018 the Blu Jaz Café’s appeal against the cancellation of its Public Entertainment (PE) Licence.
Earlier on 28 April 2018, the Police had found that there were more than 150 persons on the second floor of the café, which only has an approved occupancy load of 30 persons. In a follow-up check on 5 May 2018, the Police had found an even higher number, close to 200 persons, on the second floor. This was more than six times the approved occupancy load. Such severe overcrowding would have posed major safety risks to patrons and staff, especially in the event of a fire, and could result in a stampede if there was a need for evacuation.
Police understand that in arriving at its decision, the PEAB weighed a variety of factors, including Blu Jaz Café’s contribution to the arts and music scene in Singapore, its track record, its remedial actions and the severity of the overcrowding offences that resulted in serious public safety concerns.
With the rejection of the appeal by the PEAB, Police will proceed to cancel Blu Jaz Café’s existing Public Entertainment Licence. While it will still be allowed to operate its café, it will not be allowed to provide any form of public entertainment on its premises from 1 Feb 2019.
In the meantime, patrons can still check out their live performances at their upcoming events list here.
Top image via Blu Jaz Cafe