The move must have come as a huge disappointment for the thousands of teens and tweens that spent the night at Sydney’s Circular Quay for their chance to hear the singer’s only public Australian performance; he had been scheduled to play three whole songs.
As the event drew near, police became concerned for public safety and decided that the overly enthusiastic fans would be better off not hearing the 16-year-old pop sensation perform.
Entertainment reporter Fifi Box commented:
They kept being told to stay away from the stage, but every time they stepped near the stage, they were swamping it.
Presenter Simon Reed noted:
There were a number of surges and of course these poor girls at the from suffered the worst, a number of girls were quite distressed. The crowd was warned to relax, they didn’t head these warnings and at 5am this morning police had to cancel the concert.
As the crowd moved from Circular Quay to Martin Place, in front of the Channel 7 studios (the television station that had organized the event), disquiet began to spread amongst a 7000-strong crowd of disgruntled teens and tweens.
Presenter Grant Denyer described what happened just before the riot police were called to quell the juvenile mob:
They are in an absolute frenzy, they have come from all over Australia, they have come a long way and they are not going home. There are literally thousands of them here at Martin Place, police are trying to hold them back from the glass around the building. I’m a small guy, only five foot five – if I step down those stairs, it’s goodnight Australia.
Bieber tweeted his disappointment:
I love my fans, I am just as disappointed as everyone else, I want to sing for my fans.