A state Senate panel said Monday that the University of Hawaii could have avoided losing $200,000 in its failed attempt to hold an athletic department fundraiser if officials had performed due diligence on a company claiming to be Stevie Wonder's booking agent.
No one at the university looked into whether Epic Talent LLC was an authorized representative of the singer, the Senate Special Committee on Accountability said in its report on the so called "Wonder Blunder."
The bungled concert and its aftermath have tarnished the university's reputation nationally and within the state, the report said.
The school hasn't been able to recover $200,000 it wired to Epic as a deposit after it began selling tickets in advance for the concert, which was scheduled for August. The university called off the event July 10, shortly after the singer's actual agents at Creative Artists Agency contacted them saying Epic had no authority to set up events for Wonder.