Fans who bought tickets to see country star and “Voice” coach Blake Shelton got a double dose of tough news this week.
First, the concert, scheduled to take place at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium at East Carolina University on Saturday, August 19, got postponed to April. Then, fans learned that Shelton wouldn’t be able to perform, due to obligations from his taping of the popular talent show.
As one might expect, people who already purchased tickets with the headliner were not pleased. Blame has been ping-ponging around from performer to venue to promoter ever since, with all hoping they can successfully pass the buck and avoid the ire of the aggrieved fans.
Shelton’s camp got the ‘pass the buck’ started, indicating that the university was responsible for the decision, hoping to avoid damage to the school’s football field (the Pirates’ home opener is two weeks following the original concert date.
I wanna be clear that the Greenville concert cancel had NOTHING to do w me/my camp. I was ready to play! I love Greenville Ill be back ASAP!
— Blake Shelton (@blakeshelton) August 4, 2017
The school quickly released a statement of its own, washing its hands of blame as well:
“ECU was contacted by Basis Entertainment requesting that the performance of the Carolina Kickoff be rescheduled, citing several reasons but voicing special concern about the timing of the show,” read the statement.
“Basis Entertainment believed that the event would be negatively affected by other events on the scheduled date. Concerns were raised, as well, by the prospect of increased costs associated with replacing turf damaged using a new field covering being applied by event management.”
According to basis CEO, the decision was a mutual one.
“There were multiple factors that came into play when we made the decision to reschedule the concert to April,” Gary DeWaard, CEO of Basis Entertainment, said in a statement announcing the postponement. “There was much concern about the timing of the show in the market, as well as the potential damage that would come to the football field right before the football season begins, so we mutually decided it would be best to reschedule.”
Regardless of who is to blame, the fact remains – fans purchased tickets to a show, and aren’t getting what they paid for. They aren’t even getting what they paid for in the same calendar year they paid for it. Tickets for the original show will be honored at the April event, according to The News & Observer story, but is it really “honoring” the purchase when it’s not the same show?