Video: Violinist bullies street singer to take over her spot in Sydney


A TikTok video capturing a heated exchange between two buskers over a coveted performance spot at Pitt Street Mall in Sydney has gone viral.

Key points:

  • Singer Widya Tjong captured her confrontation with violinist Vasiliy Shapkin in a since-deleted TikTok live video that garnered over 2 million views.

  • In the clip, Shapkin can be heard demanding Tjong give up the spot because he had allegedly been waiting for it.

  • Bystanders intervened, accusing Shapkin of bullying Tjong, who eventually conceded the spot following her emotional breakdown.

  • Tjong removed her video after Shapkin drew online backlash and took down his social media accounts.

The details:

  • On March 15, Tjong started her set around 1:30 p.m. and was recording live on TikTok when Shapkin approached him and insisted that she vacate the spot.

  • He asserted his claim for a 2 p.m. performance he purportedly had reserved by leaving his belongings nearby. Tjong tearfully relented and allowed Shapkin to proceed with his performance.

  • Many bystanders rallied behind Tjong, condemning Shapkin's behavior as bullying. Social media also erupted in support of Tjong, with users expressing solidarity with the singer's plight.

  • In response to the overwhelming support she received, Tjong expressed gratitude in subsequent posts. She wrote: “I just want to take my time right here right now to thank every single one of you for sending out love, kindness and support. I really, really don’t know what to say. You guys are so powerful and I really appreciate all the gestures you guys did. I will keep doing what I love to do. I’m not giving up something like this can’t make me give up a dream I have had for 25 years so don’t worry I will still busk and perform just maybe not today not just yet.”

What commenters said:

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  • "Never let a bully get away with bs," wrote a commenter. "Thank you for doing this and spreading awareness."

  • "The fact that multiple people have said that he's extremely rude goes to show that something should be done!" another pointed out. "Good on you for standing up for him."

  • "You’re absolutely amazing and he was being extremely manipulative in the way he was talking to you going over and over the same to you things until he overtalked you and everyone," commented another.

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