Justin Bieber stormed off stage after singing one song while performing in Oslo, Norway, on Thursday after a few fans prevented him from mopping up water spilled on the stage by a fan. He was reportedly meant to sing five or six.
Given that Bieber is known to be highly strung, recently endured a probably traumatic violation of privacy for which he received little to no sympathy, and hasn’t been in trouble for months, there is one question damning media outlets aren’t asking: Is Justin Bieber okay? Since it’s clear the young singer is struggling despite evidence of a lot of self-work, a responsible narrative would ask genuinely concerned questions.
Teen Vogue did. But they are in the minority.
— Teen Vogue (@TeenVogue) October 30, 2015
The shock pull-out took place while the 21-year-old performed at a mini-concert at Oslo’s Chateau Neuf concert hall for a pre-booked TV show put on by Universal Music Norway and TV2’s Senkveld talk show, which Justin appeared on a few hours before.
Bieber’s show was to be broadcast later this month in a scheduled TV special as part of the pop prince’s intensive promo tour to support the singles “What Do You Mean?” and “Sorry” and his upcoming Purpose album.
Notably, many fans in the front row were from elementary classes in schools that the Biebs invited after visiting before the show. There were no barricades or fencing between these fans and the stage.
TV2 stated Bieber performed his 2012 hit “Boyfriend,” which was recorded twice. In between recordings, he picked up a bottle of water backstage and took a sip when he came back onstage. He then gave the bottle to a blonde girl in the front row.
He was so nice to them and gave them his water and they go and treat him with no respect…. pic.twitter.com/DwkUB1A6d6
— Kidrauhl (@BeliebinTeam) October 30, 2015
During that exchange, water from the bottle was spilled onstage. In a fan-obtained clip posted by tabloid website TMZ, Norway’s VG, and other outlets, the Biebs is seen walking to the front of the stage carrying a shirt to wipe up the water.
After throwing the shirt on the floor to mop the spillage, Justin told fans in the front row, “I just need you guys to get warmed up.”
Sounding exasperated as girls repeatedly grabbed at the shirt and feet and hampered his efforts to dry the wet spot, the heartthrob tried to reason with fans. Raising his voice, he yelled, “Hey, no, what are you doing? Yo! yo! yo! what are you doing, stop it!”
Holding out his hands, Justin added, “Come on, I said stop it! Yo! what are you doing? Come on. Guys. Yo! Listen to me! Are you listening? OK. I’m trying to wipe the floor, give me a second, yo.”
After a few seconds of mopping the stage amid screams and further interference from fans, he abruptly told the Oslo audience, “Guys, never mind. I’m done. I’m not doing the show. I’m not doing the show” as he walked to the back of the stage.
The clearly irritated “What Do You Mean?” singer dropped the shirt and and removed his hoodie as he strode off stage. Watch a close-up view of the Biebs’ storm-off moment below.
— P (@reunitedwithim) October 29, 2015
Some fans in the crowd (there were also non-fans and Norwegian celebrities at the concert) tried to convince the Biebs to resume the show by singing “Baby.” However, the superstar left Chateau Neuf quickly and immediately headed for Oslo airport.
We're trying to make him come on stage again pic.twitter.com/p6GwFn8mUP
— PURPOSE (@JBEmpire) October 29, 2015
Justin took a picture with fans while at the airport and raised a smile for the group shot.
Back at Chateau Neuf, Senkveld hosts Thomas Numme and Harald Rønneberg addressed the crowd on stage when it became clear Bieber wouldn’t be returning. TV2 writes the duo called the situation “damn crappy.” A spokesman for Universal Music Norway also spoke.
The same outlet reports four Norwegian Bieber fans (it’s rumored that one of the girls is a One Direction fan) who stood at the front of the stage, one of whom was handed the bottle of water, received threats and harassment online after they posted jokey selfies next to a note about the singer yelling.
The Biebs shared an Instagram pic shortly after the aborted show. It featured a note which reads, “‘I’m not doing the show,’ Justin Bieber to the fans before walking off.” In his caption, he apologized to those affected by his walk-off and also gave an explanation as to why he left.
“Sadly it’s Been a rough week for me,” the singer began. “Long days no sleep, while having to be ‘on’ as they would say for cameras fans etc.”
He added, “In no way did I mean to come across mean, but chose to end the show as the people in the front row would not listen. Hopefully people will understand where I am coming from.”
Elaborating, he went on, “I don’t always handle things the right way but I’m human and I’m working on getting better at responding not reacting. Unfortunately people were affected by this as am I. For the people in the back I am so sorry and for anyone I may have disappointed im sorry. Sorry for wasting the tv people’s time I’ll be sure to make it up to you next time on tour.. With love Justin.”
The only thing I want it to be about. It's all said here. https://t.co/ZWMJvhasht
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) October 30, 2015
On Twitter, the Biebs said, “The only thing I want it to be about. It’s all said here,” before including the iTunes link to his Purpose album.
The concert walk-out comes less than 24 hours after the singer walked out of a Spanish radio interview, after seemingly becoming frustrated with his hosts’ poor translation skills and their publicity-grabbing request that he take part in filming a YouTube video.
After his untimely exit from the interview, Justin shared a Snapchat video telling followers he thought he had bronchitis. It’s not known if he does, but based on his Instagram message he clearly doesn’t feel 100 percent.
This changes everything. pic.twitter.com/7jb0iGkQhv
— stefanie (@MyBieberHeaven) October 30, 2015
@en_jajaja I don't see an issue with that honestly, guy's cleaning up a safety hazard & those kids aren't letting him, i'd be pissed :')
— Kiingtong (@Kiinqtonq) October 29, 2015
Rihanna is one of the biggest brats in the industry but people just roll with it without paying mind to it because she doesn't apologize lol
— Ivanna (@jejebito) October 29, 2015
How much more different could've justin handled it? he told them to STOP – more than once, they didn't listen..
— sorry. (@SpongieBieber) October 29, 2015
Tired, bronchitis and too much of everything and everyone. @justinbieber feel better soon… ❤
— Tima.•:*¨`*:•. @.• (@legilex) October 29, 2015
Give Justin respect, he will respect you back!! The way it works with everybody!! #RespectForJustin
— Kathleen (@Biebercome2me) October 30, 2015
Justin took a stand for what he wanted and what he thought was right. Sometimes you have to put yourself before others and that's okay.
— Justin Bieber News ™ (@BelieveTUpdates) October 30, 2015
Online, supportive Beliebers pointed out that Justin repeatedly asked fans at the show to listen and stop impeding his efforts to clear a hazardous water spill. These fans powered #RespectForJustin to the top worldwide trending topics on Twitter on Thursday.
Hopefully, Bieber is getting the rest and help he appears to be in need of right now. No one is disputing that he reacts very emotionally to pressures, but with examples such as Nicholas Brendon and the late Cory Monteith in mind, we all know — and should — do better, instead of continually aiming simplistic low blows at an easy target.
[Images via Reuters]