9 Celebs Who Were Paid Colossal Amounts Of Money For Private Performances

We all know that the Kardashian/Jenner clan has found major success by simply appearing at clubs and events across the globe. (Seriously, Kourtney’s baby daddy Scott Disick used to be able to pull in around $80,000 a night for appearing at a club by himself.) And yet, the KUWTK clan aren’t the only celebs who have make obscene amounts of money for making appearances and/or performing at various events. From Bar Mitzvahs to dictators birthday parties, here are 9 celebs who were paid colossal amounts of money for private performances.

1
Drake
Drake, WENN, 051816
WENN
Earlier this year, a lucky 13-year old New York girl got Drake to headline her Bat Mitzvah. We're not sure exactly how much Drake was paid for this particular event, but in 2011 he preformed at Bar Mitzvah for a cool sum of $250,000 dollars. (Apparently Kanye West was the lucky kid's first choice, but the surly rapper's $1 million dollar fee was a tad too outrageous, so he scooped up Drake instead.) The Bat Matizvah was held at NYC's famed Rainbow Room where the Canadian rapper performed "Hotline Bling" and several other classics. We wonder if the girl's parents are taking adoption applications for twenty-somethings like us?
2
Snooki
Snooki, WENN, 051816
WENN
Back in 2011 Rutgers University paid $32,000 dollars to  Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi for appearing at a student produced comedy Q&A. She roused and delighted the crowd by telling students to "study hard, but party harder." That same year, Rutgers paid Pulitzer Prize winning author Toni Morrison $30,000 to speak at the University's commencement to more that 10,000 graduates. Rutgers obviously knows how to manage their money.....
3
Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lopez, WENN, 051816
WENN
With a Vegas residency under her belt, a slew of rom-coms and a hit NBC drama, Jennifer Lopez has continued to sizzle in the entertainment industry for years. However, back in 2013, one of her performances had people scratching their heads. President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov of Turkmenistan (a country in Central Asia) paid Jenny from the block, $1.5 million dollars to perform at his birthday. Considering the fact that Turkmenistan is one of the most repressed countries on the globe, and the fact that "the government thoroughly denies freedoms of association, expression, and religion, and the country is closed to independent scrutiny", human rights activists were none to pleased with J.Lo. The entertainer addressed the controversy by saying, she would not have sung for leader if she had known about country's human rights record.
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4
Hilary Swank
Hilary Swank, WENN, 051816
WENN
Sometimes celebs don't even need to preform at events in order to rack in the dough. In 2011, Academy Award winning actress Hilary Swank was reportedly paid upwards of $500,000 dollars to attend the 35th birthday celebration of Ramzan Kadyrov, the Head of the Chechen Republic (a country in Russia). Kadyrov is a dictator known for horrific human rights abuses. A number of Kadyrov's critics and political rivals have been murdered in recent years. Swank claimed she had no prior knowledge of Kadyrov's record and after the event was publicized, she fired some of her agents and her manager (though her PR team dropped her for the incident.)  Swank has since said she has donated the entirety of her fee to charity. Still, we can't help but think that all of this could have been avoided with a lovely tool called Google.
5
Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey, WENN, 051816
WENN
Before he was murdered in 2011, and before Libya fell into complete disarray, the country was run by Muammar Qaddafi. In 2007, Qaddafi's son paid songstress Mariah Carey $1 million dollars to preform 4 songs at the family's New Year's party in St. Barts. During his 41-year rule Qaddafi delighted in torturing, killing and stamping out equal rights in Libya. Carey was embarrassed that she was linked to the Quaddfi family and later said that she donated her fee to charity. She said, "I was naive and unaware of who I was booked to perform for. I feel horrible and embarrassed to have participated in this mess. Going forward, this is a lesson for all artists to learn from. We need to be more aware and take more responsibility regardless of who books our shows. Ultimately, we as artists are to be held accountable." Or at the very least get better PR and handlers.
6
Beyonce Knowles
Beyonce Knowles, WENN, 051816
WENN
Mariah Carey wasn't the only mega star to get caught up with the Qaddafi family. Beyoncé performed at the Qaddafis' 2009 New Years Eve party in St. Barths. When this came out in the press, Yonce said that she had already donated her $2 million dollar fee to help support earthquake relief in Haiti. Bey's hubby Jay-Z, Usher and Lindsay Lohan were also in attendance at this shindig. The Lemonade singer's publicist Yvette Noel-Schure made a statement saying,  "Once it became known that the third party promoter was linked to the {Gaddafi} family, the decision was made to put that payment to a good cause." You can watch a bit of what $2 million will get you here.
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7
Nelly Furtado
Nelly Furtado, WENN, 051916
WENN
Unfortunately, Mariah, J.Lo, Bey and Hilary Swank weren't the only ones to get roped in by dictators. In 2007, Canadian singer Nelly Furtado was paid $1 million to sing a 45-minute set for Gaddafi family members. The private event was held at a hotel in Italy. Once the performance was publicized, Furtado released a statement on twitter saying that she would donate the fee to a undisclosed charity. Hopefully, these celebs will do more thorough research going forward before they decide to proceed with performing.
8
Sting
Sting, WENN, 051816
WENN
Despite human right's issues, some performers feel that boycotting won't change anything in repressed countries. Back in 2009, Sting performed in Uzbekistan for Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of dictator, Islam Karimov. Sting was fully aware of  Karimov's disastrous record on human rights before he appeared at the event (because Google), so he kept his coins afterward. He also hung out with Gulnara Karimova at a fashion show for the release of her new clothing line where she wore a tiara. We guess it pays to not give AF.
9
Nicki Minaj
Nicki Minaj, Instagram, 051816
Instagram
In 2015, 13-year old Matt Murstein as delighted when rapper Nicki Minaj agreed to preform at his Bar Mitzvah in New York for a fee of several hundred thousand dollars. Minaj even took to her instagram to post pics of the smitten kiddo and his lucky group of friends. According to Newsweek the Murstein family paid Minaj somewhere between $300,000 and $500,000 dollars but, they did not reveal the exact fee due to the nature of the contract. After her performance Minaj told the kiddos to, "get an education. Stay in school. And don’t be a slouch or a bum.” We're just wondering what the Mursteins are going to come up with when Matt graduates from high school.

 

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