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King of Thailand goes into isolation from coronavirus with 20 women

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Thailand’s king has taken over a luxury German hotel to isolate from the coronavirus, and yes, he took along 20 women, according to reports.

King Maha Vajiralongkorn, 67, reportedly booked the entire Grand Hotel Sonnenbichl with “special permission” to break the lockdown in the Alpine resort town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, the Independent said, quoting German media.

But rather than isolate, he moved in a harem of 20 concubines along with a team of servants, the UK paper said, citing German tabloid Bild.

The king, widely known as Rama X, planned an even bigger party — but 119 members of his entourage were forced to return to Thailand amid fears they had the potentially deadly bug, the report said.

It was not clear if his fourth wife, former flight attendant Suthida Tidjai, was even with him.

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His takeover made local news because hotels in the region have been forced to close to stem the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

But the Grand Hotel Sonnenbichl was given special permission to host the king and his entourage because “the guests are a single, homogenous group of people with no fluctuation,” a spokesperson for the local district council said, according to the report.

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Ghanaian-British singer, RAYE Makes History at BRIT Awards

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Ghanian-British singer, RAYE Makes History at BRIT Awards

Last night, at the BRIT Awards, global sensation RAYE has made history by clinching an unprecedented 6 awards – the record for the most wins in a single year – marking a groundbreaking achievement for the independent singer-songwriter at Britain’s biggest night in music.

In addition to becoming the first female to ever win Songwriter of the Year, she also took home accolades for Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year (“Escapism.”), Best New Artist, and Best R&B Act. RAYE gave a career-defining performance at the ceremony, performing a medley of songs off her critically acclaimed debut album, My 21st Century Blues, including hits “Escapism.” and “Ice Cream Man.” Next, RAYE is set to make her first appearance at Coachella on April 13th and 20th.

Read Also: RAYE Shares Long-Awaited Debut ‘My 21st Century Blues’

Taking the title of the most nominated artist in a single BRITs year, RAYE led the charge tonight with a record-breaking 7 nominations in total – a first by any artist since The BRITs began in 1977, eclipsing the record to date of six held by Gorillaz (2002), Craig David (2001) and Robbie Williams (1999). Her 6 award wins tonight places RAYE at the top of the BRITs leaderboard for having the most wins in one night, making BRIT Awards history by beating the previous record of four, held by Harry Styles (2023), Adele (2016) and Blur (1995).

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RAYE said she was “so honored and blown away” to be receiving her first BRIT Award as Songwriter of the Year. “I will treasure this trophy very much,” the London-born musician added. “I am so grateful to be recognized as a songwriter as this is a craft I am so passionate about and have been since I started my journey as a musician, and I’m very grateful to those who voted for me to have this award.”

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About RAYE

British singer-songwriter RAYE shines as one of the brightest stars in music today, boasting eight Top 20 UK singles, 5 Billion global Spotify streams, an Ivor Novello Award, and a track record of writing for the industry’s biggest names. Since her debut in 2014, RAYE has undergone a remarkable journey to stardom. Nominated for a record-breaking seven 2024 BRIT Awards – the most of any artist in one year – her long-awaited independent debut album My 21st Century Blues made an immediate impact. As a welcome result of her self-fulfilling work, RAYE unknowingly created the song that became synonymous with 2023.

The global smash “Escapism.” not only became the largest selling single by a female British artist in 2023, but it also earned RAYE her first UK #1 and entry on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the US where it’s since been certified Platinum. Following support tours with Lewis Capaldi, Kali Uchis, and SZA, RAYE performed 130 headline shows including a rousing set at Glastonbury’s Pyramid Stage. Her career-defining turn at Royal Albert Hall – accompanied by a 50-person orchestra and gospel choir – received a televised BBC special for the ages with critics heralding RAYE as “the most talented artist since Adele and Amy Winehouse” (The Telegraph). This year, she gears up to perform her “My 21st Century Symphony” to a sold-out crowd of 20,000 at The O2 Arena prior to making her debut at Coachella.

In the last year, she has graced the cover of magazines such as GQ, Cosmopolitan, Wonderland, Bricks, Euphoria, Time Out and DIY and been featured in The New York Times, Rolling Stone, Billboard, Pitchfork, V Magazine, NPR Music, People, Vulture, and many more. Globally, RAYE’s season of high profile television performances this year include The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Good Morning America, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Later… with Jools Holland, and The Graham Norton Show, in addition to a career-defining appearance on NPR’s Tiny Desk concert series. RAYE has also been featured in Kim Kardashian’s SKIMS Shapewear collection campaign(alongside PinkPantheress, Ice Spice, and Nessa Barrett) and can currently be seen in H&M’s global Move campaign seen in 76 territories worldwide.

RAYE was born  in Tooting, London, to a Ghanaian-Swiss mother who is a mental health worker and an English father, originally from Yorkshire. Raye’s middle name ‘Agatha’ is also the name of her grandmother. As a child, she sang gospel songs in a church where her father was the musical director and her mother sang in the choir. Stay tuned for more to come from the 2024 iHeartRadio Music Award nominee, including her debut at Coachella on April 13 and 20, 2024.

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Emirates to restart daily Phnom Penh services via Singapore

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 Emirates will bring back its daily Phnom Penh service starting from 1 May via Singapore, boosting the airline’s Southeast Asian connectivity to/from Dubai, and linking two trade and leisure centres in the region.    

Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Deputy President, and Chief Commercial Officer commented: “The resumption of our Phnom Penh services demonstrates our commitment to strengthening our Southeast Asian network, as we continue to create more opportunities for travellers to explore diverse and culturally rich destinations, and help businesses and exporters of all sizes establish stronger trade connections.

We thank the Cambodian and Singaporean authorities for their support in establishing this new route. We look forward to re-introducing our customers to yet another vibrant destination on our network as they explore the world.” 

The service will be operated with a three-class Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. Emirates’ flight EK348 will depart Dubai at 0230hrs and arrive in Singapore at 1405hrs. The flight will then depart Singapore at 1535hrs arriving in Phnom Penh at 1635hrs. Emirates’ return flight EK349 will leave Phnom Penh at 2050hrs and arrives in Singapore at 2350hrs. The flight will then depart Singapore at 0140hrs the next day arriving in Dubai at 0455hrs. All times are local.

Read Also: Emirates scores its fourth Grand Slam – The Championships, Wimbledon

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Phnom Penh’s linked schedule with Singapore is conveniently timed, providing optimal connecting opportunities to and from multiple cities in France, UK, Germany, Switzerland and the United States. Through this additional connection, Emirates will serve Singapore with four daily flights starting from 1 May.

Emirates SkyCargo will also offer cargo bellyhold capacity on the Boeing 777-300ER of more than 300 tonnes per week in and out of Phnom Penh. Main commodities exported from Phnom Penh include textiles, pharmaceuticals, and other high-value commodities.

The new Emirates services will offer 8 First Class private suites, 42 lie flat seats in Business Class and 310 spacious seats in Economy Class. Travellers will also be able to enjoy the airline’s award-winning service and industry-leading products across all classes, with regionally-inspired dishes and complimentary beverages and the airline’s ice inflight entertainment system which offers up to 6,500 channels of on-demand entertainment in over 40 languages, including movies, TV shows, and an extensive musical library along with games, audiobooks and podcasts.

Tickets can be booked online through www.emirates.com or with both online and offline travel agents. 

A significant Southeast Asian hub

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Located in Cambodia’s south-central region, Phnom Penh is the nation’s economic, industrial, as well as cultural centre and has seen rapid growth in its infrastructure and economy over the decades. This makes Phnom Penh one of the most popular Southeast Asian hubs for tourism and trade, with significant appeal to travellers from Europe and the Americas. The city is currently building a new international airport with plans to start operations in 2025, replacing the current Phnom Penh International Airport and improving Cambodia’s connectivity with the world.

Phnom Penh is widely known for its heritage sites and tourist attractions including the Royal Palace with the Silver Pagoda, and the National Museum. Through its daily services to Phnom Penh as well the unilateral agreement with Cambodia Air, Emirates will also facilitate convenient travel to the world-famous Angkor Wat temple complex near Siem Reap.

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Manchester to host the 2024 MTV Europe Music Awards

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MTV today confirmed that the 2024 MTV EMAs will take place in Manchester, UK. Now in its 30th year, this is the first time that music’s biggest global celebration will be staged in the city, and it also marks its epic return to the UK. Broadcasting from Manchester’s brand-new, purpose-built live entertainment arena Co-op Live on MTV via DStv Channel 322 and GOtv Channel 72 on Sunday, 10th November, the show will honour and unite music’s brightest stars.

“The MTV EMAs is one of the biggest global music celebrations, bringing together local and international artists to create iconic performances for fans around the world.  With music at the very heart of Manchester’s rich creative heritage, this vibrant city – with the state-of-the-art Co-op Live – will guarantee a supercharged 2024 show,” said Bruce Gillmer, President of Music, Music Talent, Programming & Events, Paramount, and Chief Content Officer, Music, Paramount+.

Lee Sears, President, International Markets Advertising Sales, commented: “Manchester is a dynamic and innovative city with the infrastructure to deliver a live music event of the scale of the MTV EMAs. We look forward to spotlighting this world-class destination  – and the cutting-edge Co-op Live arena – on the global stage.”

Councillor Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “As a city that is known the world over for our legendary music scene, MTV could not have picked a better place for this year’s EMAs. With the expertise, experience and reputation we also have for delivering successful, world-class events, we’re confident Manchester will provide a superb platform for the best MTV EMAs yet, and look forward to welcoming MTV and the global music community to our city for what is set to be an epic celebration of music and artists. Manchester meets MTV – we can’t wait!”

Gary Roden, Executive Director and General Manager, Co-op Live added: “Co-op Live has been designed from the ground up to offer, at its core, a truly exceptional live music and fan experience, and we are delighted to be hosting an event which epitomises what our venue stands for. We are honoured to become part of the MTV EMAs story, and to cement Manchester’s standing within the global live entertainment industry.”

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Fans can stay up-to-date with all things MTV EMAs by heading to https://www.mtvema.com/ following the show on Instagram,Snapchat, X, TikTok and Facebook and follow the social conversation using #MTVEMA.

SOCIAL TAGS: #MTVEMA @MTVEMA

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Diddy sued by male producer who alleges sexual assault

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A former employee of Sean “Diddy” Combs has filed a lawsuit against the producer and businessman, accusing him of sexual assault, sexual harassment and “grooming.”

Rodney “Lil Rod” Jones, a former producer and videographer for Combs, filed his civil complaint in New York federal court on Monday. He states he worked for and traveled with Combs between 2022 – 2023, while collaborating with Combs on his most recent album, “Love.”

Among other allegations, Jones claims that Combs did not compensate him for his music producing work, forced him to procure and interact with sex workers, threatened him and served alcoholic beverages laced with drugs to guests at parties at his homes. Combs’ chief of staff, Kristina Khorram; Universal Music Group CEO Sir Lucian Grainge; former Motown CEO Ethiopia Habtemariam; and Combs’ adult son, Justin, are also named as defendants.

Justin Combs is accused of soliciting prostitutes and underage girls to attend parties at his father’s homes. Khorram allegedly ordered prostitutes and illicit drugs for Combs and his guests and according to the lawsuit, Jones believed Khorram “aided and abetted” Combs’ sexual assault. Grainge and Habtemarian, according to the lawsuit, “sponsored and attended several” listening parties for the “Love” album at Combs’ Los Angeles home, and “knew or should have known that Mr. Combs was drugging the attendees through laced bottles of DeLeon Tequila, and Ciroc Vodka.” As sponsors of these events, the lawsuit states Grainge and Habtemarian “had a duty and obligation to ensure that sex workers and underaged girls were not present, and that Mr. Combs was not spiking the alcohol with date rape drugs.”

Read Also: Diddy Breaks Silence On ‘Sickening Allegations’ Made Against Him

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Jones is seeking $30 million.

Shawn Holley, Sean Combs’ attorney, denied the allegations in a statement to CNN, calling Jones “a liar.”

“His reckless name-dropping about events that are pure fiction and simply did not happen is nothing more than a transparent attempt to garner headlines. We have overwhelming, indisputable proof that his claims are complete lies,” Holley said in the statement. “Our attempts to share this proof with Mr. Jones’ attorney, Tyrone Blackburn, have been ignored, as Mr. Blackburn refuses to return our calls. We will address these outlandish allegations in court and take all appropriate action against those who make them.”

A representative for Justin Combs told CNN in a statement: “Justin Combs categorically denies these absurd allegations. They are all lies! This is a a clear example of a desperate person taking desperate measures in hopes of a pay day. There will be legal consequences for ALL defamatory statements made about the Combs family.”

CNN has reached out to an attorney for Jones for comment on their statements. Representatives for Khorram, Grainge and Habtemariam were not immediately available for comment.

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According to the complaint, obtained by CNN, Jones claims that “Throughout his time living with Mr. Combs, Mr. Jones was the victim of constant unsolicited and unauthorized groping and touching of his anus.”

When Jones raised concerns about the alleged harassment to Khorram, the lawsuit states she dismissed it as “friendly horseplay.”

Jones described Combs as “forceful and demanding” in the lawsuit, claiming that Combs displayed firearms, talked about getting away with shooting people, and intimidated Jones with his influence in the music industry.

As his videographer, Jones alleges that he “has secured HUNDREDS of hours of footage and audio recordings of Mr. Combs, his staff, and his guests engaging in serious illegal activity.”

Citing as an example of alleged grooming he experienced by Combs, Jones claims that Combs encouraged him to watch producer and reality TV personality Steven ‘Stevie J’ Jordan, someone who Combs allegedly knew Jones admired professionally, engage in sex with another man.

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“This was done to ease Mr. Jones’ anxiety concerning homosexuality,” the suit alleges. “According to Mr. Combs, ‘this is a normal practice in the music industry, look even Stevie J is doing it.’”

Stevie J is not accused of wrongdoing and is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit. In a statement to CNN, he called Jones’ allegations “false.”

“My lawyer will be handling this going forward,” Stevie J added.

Jones also alleges in the suit that Combs is liable for a sexual assault he says he experienced by Oscar-winning actor Cuba Gooding, Jr., which allegedly took place “on a yacht rented by Mr. Combs in the US Virgin Islands in January 2023.”

“Mr. Combs was present while Mr. Jones was being assaulted by Cuba Gooding Jr.,” the suit alleges. “Mr. Jones was legally on the premises as a guest and invitee of Mr. Combs. Cuba Gooding Jr. was legally on the premises as a guest and invitee of Mr. Combs.”

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Gooding, Jr. has not publicly commented on the complaint and his representatives have not yet returned CNN’s request for comment. He is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit.

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DAVIDO & THE DAVID ADELEKE FOUNDATION, COMMITS ADDITIONAL ₦300 MILLION NAIRA (189K USD) TO ORPHANAGES ACROSS NIGERIA

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Today, The David Adeleke Foundation, DAF was pleased to announce that it has committed an additional donation of ₦300 million (189K USD) to orphanages across Nigeria as part of its’ ongoing efforts to improve the welfare of Nigeria’s children. Committed to bettering the lives of others and giving back, over the past four years, The David Adeleke Foundation, DAF has successfully donated over ₦1Billion NAIRA (657K USD) to Nigeria’s most vulnerable.

Davido grew up inspired by the philanthropic work of his father which had a strong influence on his own philosophy in life: “’We rise by lifting others’ is a quote I always loved,” said Davido. “It means that as I grow, I want other people to grow with me.”

As with previous initiatives, this donation has been made with careful consideration and a steadfast dedication to bettering the lives of underprivileged children within Nigeria. The disbursement process, which will commence within the coming weeks, will be overseen by the DAF Disbursement Committee, ensuring transparency and accountability in the allocation of funds.

The David Adeleke Foundation understands the importance of transparency and accountability in charitable endeavors and acknowledges that the process of disbursing these funds to various orphanages will take time. A complete list of previous donation recipients has been posted on Davido’s social media account along with this year’s announcement. The DAF anticipates that the disbursement process will be completed within the next three weeks. During this time, the DAF team will work diligently to verify and process payments to the selected orphanages across the country. In the meantime, updates on the progress of the disbursement will be provided in a timely manner.

ABOUT THE DAVID ADELEKE FOUNDATION (DAF)

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The DAVID ADELEKE FOUNDATION was born out of the passion and benevolence of David Adeleke, popularly known as “Davido”, to help others constantly. Davido is famous for his popular saying, “We Rise By Lifting Others”, a statement he has lived by over the years. From paying for surgeries of ailing Nigerians, donating funds from his music video to research on COVID-19 Virus, to offering scholarships to students, both locally and overseas. 

The David Adeleke Foundation began in earnest in 2021, upon celebrating his 29th birthday, Davido requested that his friends and those he had helped in the industry donate. In the space of minutes, Davido had received millions of Naira from various celebrities and organizations who had benefitted from him one way or the other, further evidencing his compassion and help rendered to many. Davido received Two Hundred Million Naira from the public in a few days, and he added the sum of Fifty Million Naira to the money received and donated the total sum of Two Hundred and Fifty Million Naira to orphanages across the country. 

After the successful distribution of funds, The David Adeleke Foundation has continued to grow each year and remains committed to making a positive impact on the lives of Nigerian children, it is grateful for the continued support and encouragement it has received.

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Emirates scores its fourth Grand Slam – The Championships, Wimbledon

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Emirates scores its fourth “Grand Slam” as the airline announces a multi-year partnership with one of the most prestigious tennis events in the world – The Championships, Wimbledon.

As the Official Airline Partner of The Championships, Wimbledon – Emirates will take the world of tennis to new heights with exciting activations on-ground. The Championships is set to take place from 1 to 14 July 2024 at The All England Lawn Tennis Club.

The airline is now a proud partner of all four Grand Slam tournaments.

Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline, said: “From hard court to grass court – we’re proud to be growing our presence in the world of tennis. Wimbledon is a major sporting event viewed by millions around the world, and we’re delighted to be associated with such a well-respected brand.

Emirates has always been a supporter of tennis and as a sponsor of all four Grand Slams – our commitment to the sport is as staunch as ever. We look forward to serving up world-class tennis action this summer, and to celebrating the very best of tennis with fans from all over the world.”

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Deborah Jevans CBE, Chair of the All England Club, said: “We are delighted to welcome Emirates to our family of Official Partners at Wimbledon. In partnering with Emirates, as Official Airline Partner, Wimbledon is joining forces with a premium brand and one of the world’s leading sponsors of tennis, and sport more generally. As Emirates embarks on its fourth decade supporting tennis, this exciting partnership takes the organisation’s investment and connection to the sport to the next level.  

We have received record levels of interest from the UK and around the world in attending The Championships this year, and support from Official Partners like Emirates helps us maintain the event at the pinnacle of sport for both players and fans.” 

Official Airline Partner of Wimbledon

Through the partnership, Emirates will enjoy a wide-range of benefits including: on-court branding in Centre Court and No.1 Court; on-site activations to engage with tennis fans; marketing, digital, and social media rights; hospitality tickets; and an opportunity for the airline to join the popular ‘Wimbleworld’ on the metaverse platform, Roblox, with Emirates’ branded tennis courts and obstacle courses.

Championing “Force for Good” initiatives

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Emirates and Wimbledon will also join forces to support social impact initiatives across the UK. Under the partnership, a multimillion-pound “Force for Good” fund will be created to support and promote initiatives that positively impact society and support local communities. Further details on this fund will be announced during 2024.

Proud sponsor of four Grand Slams

Emirates has been the Official Airline of the ATP Tour since 2013 and Premier Partner since 2016. The airline’s portfolio includes some of the most high-profile events on the ATP and WTA tours. In addition to all four Grand Slam tournaments, including: US Open (since 2012); Roland-Garros (since 2013); Australian Open (since 2015); and The Championships, Wimbledon (announced 2024) – the airline also supports 60 other tournaments across the year. Emirates has also supported the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships since its inception in 1993.

The airline’s sponsorship portfolio also includes other top global sports such as golf, horse racing and sailing. In the UK, the airline is a proud sponsor of Arsenal, Emirates FA Cup and Lancashire Cricket Club & Emirates Old Trafford.

Committed to the UK 

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Emirates has been serving the UK with world-class travel experiences for more than 37 years. The airline currently operates  131 weekly flights to the UK utilizing a mix fleet of its iconic A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft.

Emirates’ extensive network of more than 130 destinations offers UK customers access to an array of onward connections to Asia, the Indian Ocean, the Middle East, Africa and Australasia.

 

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