The organizers of the notorious Fyre Festival, which was the subject of two recent documentaries, hinted at one point that Kanye West would be involved with the doomed event, with sister-in-law Kendall Jenner announcing later that artists from West’s G.O.O.D. Music label would headline the festival, per People.
Now, it appears there’s been another scam involving a fake Kanye performance.
An acquaintance of West who claimed to represent the rapper reportedly reached out on false pretenses to a top fashion designer and agreed to a bogus contract for Kanye to perform at a New York Fashion Week show for nearly $1 million. This money was then allegedly wired to the scammer.
According to TMZ, “a guy Ye knew” reached out to designer Philipp Plein, pitching West to perform at the event. The talks led to a contract for West to perform, which was forged by the scammer or someone working with them. Plein then wired the money, and even sent out an exclusive invitation for the party.
The party was an invitation-only affair, scheduled for next Monday, and rumored to be taking place at one of the city’s most expensive restaurants, music blog Brooklyn Vegan reported, prior to the revelation of the scam.
On Wednesday, West’s wife Kim Kardashian tweeted, in response to a question about the Plein show, that Kanye “is not performing at any fashion show this season,” and that previous reports were “just a rumor.”
“We’re told the guy forged Kanye’s name on the contract and then had a $900,000 advance wired to an account… which the guy promptly cleaned out,” wrote TMZ, which obtained and published the contract.
The gossip site also said that the scammer is suspected to be a former friend of the rapper, someone associated with the G.O.O.D. Music venture. If the scammer’s identity is known, that person is likely looking at slam-dunk charges of wire fraud, and possibly other crimes.
Plein had not commented to New York Times reporter Matthew Schneier, per a recent Twitter post, when asked earlier this week about the supposed Kanye performance.
The 40-year-old Plein, a German fashion designer, is responsible for the Philipp Plein, Plein Sport, and Billionaire Couture brands. Plein is now not only out nearly $1 million, but must deal with both the embarrassment of the episode and the lack of a headliner for his big show.
New York Fashion Week starts Friday and runs through Feb. 16. West has participated in NYFW in other years, most notably at shows for his Yeezy fashion line.