Following the lead of several of his Ozzfest touring mates, Marilyn Manson has scheduled a handful of shows on off days from the tour. The often-controversial artist played his first of nine non-festi

Following the lead of several of his Ozzfest touring mates, Marilyn Manson has scheduled a handful of shows on off days from the tour. The often-controversial artist played his first of nine non-festival shows on Sunday in Omaha, Neb. Similar dates are planned in Birmingham, Ala.; Las Vegas; New Orleans; Norfolk, Va.; Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Montreal; Grand Rapids, Mich.; and Wantagh, N.Y.

The last of those dates, Aug. 9 at the Jones Beach Amphitheater in Wantagh, will find Manson joining the last stop of the "Big Day Off" tour, which stars fellow Ozzfest performers Slipknot, Papa Roach, Linkin Park, Disturbed, and Mudvayne. As previously reported, those bands are spending many of the off days from the tour playing a shadow festival of their own creation.

As previously reported, Manson was asked by the church-affiliated group Citizens for Peace and Respect to cancel his June 21 Ozzfest appearance in Denver, due to his music's reported influence on Columbine High School killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. In a statement on his Web site, Manson responded, saying "I am truly amazed that after all this time, religious groups still need to attack entertainment and use these tragedies as a pitiful excuse for their own self-serving publicity."

"In response to their protests," he continues, "I will provide a show where I balance my songs with a wholesome Bible reading. This way, fans will not only hear my so-called, 'violent' point of view, but we can also examine the virtues of wonderful 'Christian' stories of disease, murder, adultery, suicide, and child sacrifice. Now that seems like 'entertainment' to me."

In related news, Ozzfest second stage headline act Disturbed has been promoted to the tour's main stage following the tour's North American kick off last Friday near Chicago. The move was made due to safety concerns because the second stage area was too small to accommodate the amount of fans the band drew to its performance. Beginning with the next day's show in Milwaukee, Disturbed now appears in the 5:05 p.m. mainstage slot.

Disturbed was initially offered a mainstage berth on the bill, but turned it down so the band could perform in a more intimate setting. While the band regrets the move, its members "understand the need for them to appear on the mainstage in order for their fans to see their show in a comfortable and safe environment," according to a statement.

The Ozzfest tour, which today (June 12) plays the Verizon Music Amphitheater near Indianapolis, runs through an Aug. 11-12 stand in Holmdel, N.J.

Here are Marilyn Manson's remaining non-Ozzfest dates:
June 14: Birmingham, Ala. (Sloss Furnace)
June 15: New Orleans (House of Blues)
July 1: Las Vegas (House of Blues)
July 10: Norfolk, Va. (Norva)
July 11: Myrtle Beach, S.C. (House of Blues)
July 23: Montreal (Metropolis)
Aug. 2: Grand Rapids, Mich. (Devos Hall)
Aug. 9: Wantagh, N.Y. (Jones Beach)

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