Garth Brooks Cancels Five Stadium Shows, Citing Wave Of COVID Cases
Kevin Mazur/BBMA2020/Getty Images for dcp – Garth Brooks
performs onstage at the 2020 Billboard Music Awards, broadcast on October 14, 2020 at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.
Two weeks after telling fans that he was analyzing whether his stadium tour should continue amidst a surge in COVID-19 cases, Garth Brooks and his team have come to a decision. The country star broke the news Aug. 18 that the five gigs he had on the books have been canceled.
The canceled dates include Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati Sept. 18; Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C., Sept. 25; M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Md., Oct. 2 and Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., Oct. 9.
Plus, Brooks’ show at Nissan Stadium in Nashville has been called off. The show, which was supposed to take place July 31 and was postponed because of a storm, had not yet been rescheduled.
Wednesday’s announcement notes that ticketholders don’t need to take any action to obtain a refund as Ticketmaster will automatically issue refunds to the original method of payment used.
“In July, I sincerely thought the pandemic was falling behind us. Now, watching this new wave, I realize we are still in the fight and I must do my part. I have asked the wonderful cities of Cincinnati and Charlotte to wait too long and I don’t want to now do that same thing to the great folks in Boston and Baltimore. As far as Nashville, we are looking for a makeup date from the July rain out and though this is not COVID related, to make them wait makes me sad, as well. So, it is with a heavy heart we announce the decision to cancel all 5 shows but with a hopeful heart, we will reschedule and start over when this wave seems to be behind us,” Brooks said in a statement.
“The joy I have seen in everyone’s faces as live music returns has been more than worth our constant diligence to maintain safety protocols not only for the fans, but for our band, the crew and the hard working staff in these stadiums. Their dedication to safety for the people who fill those seats has been a miracle to watch and a blessing to receive. I am truly grateful.”
Earlier this month Brooks announced that in addition to reassessing whether to continue his stadium tour, he wouldn’t put tickets on sale for Seattle’s Lumen Field. The Sept. 4 concert would have marked his first show at the home of the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks and his first appearance in the Seattle/Tacoma area in four years.
Brooks most recently took the stage at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb., Aug. 14 – the first music event at the venue in more than three decades. A message on Brooks’ website says that over 86,000 tickets were sold in 75 minutes.
As for now, Brooks doesn’t have any upcoming confirmed shows on his calendar. His team plans to monitor COVID’s impact and see how “schools, sports, and other entertainment entities are handling this stage of the pandemic,” according to a Wednesday’s announcement.
Brooks added, “I’m sincerely hoping we are back on tour before the year’s end. With that said, the most important thing to me is fulfilling my end of the Stadium Tour by making sure every show is doable before putting tickets on sale (that is why we pulled the Seattle on sale) and making sure the environment these people are trading their time and money to put themselves into is not only the best experience ever, but also the safest one we can provide.”
Brooks was celebrated as the Country Touring Artist of the Decade at the Pollstar Awards in June. The singer/songwriter sent in a video to accept his win, thanking his crew and band for all their hard work over the decade.
His recent accolades also include being named one of the Kennedy Center honorees and receiving the Icon Award at the 2020 Billboard Music Awards.
His 2019 tour grossed $76.1 million, ranking as the top country tour of the year and overall at No. 9 on Pollstar’s Year-End Top 200 North American Tours chart.