NATIONAL: A Melbourne taxi driver’s refusal to pick up award-winning Aboriginal singer Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu could only be a result of racism, his manager has said.
Gurrumul’s manager Mark Grose told ABC Radio today that he had hailed a taxi for Gurrumul and his girlfriend Bronwyn after the blind singer-songwriter had performed at the Palais Theatre in Melbourne.
Gurrumul was on tour with singer Missy Higgens.
Mr Grose said he then went back to get Gurrumul.
“The taxi driver looked at him, said no, locked the car and drove off,” Mr Grose told the ABC.
“He refused to take the fare.”
He said there was no other explanation except racism.
“I’m just absolutely gobsmacked by it,” Mr Grose said.
“Like most Aboriginal people that we work with they’ve experienced these things before and they’re less shocked than we are.”
“It’s happened a couple of times in Sydney and it’s happened in Darwin.”
Gurrumul is recognised as one of Australia’s most talented singers and has achieved international acclaim.