Queens of the Stone Age Cancel New Zealand Concerts Following Earthquake
Queens of the Stone Age have postponed one date and canceled another following Tuesday's deadly earthquake which struck the New Zealand city of Christchurch.
The American alternative rock group played in Auckland on Monday night and were slated to perform Tuesday night at the Wellington Town Hall and in Christchurch on Thursday.
However, tour promoters the Frontier Touring Company said today that the Christchurch show had been scrapped. The Wellington date will instead go ahead on Wednesday night.
Both bands were close to boarding a flight to Wellington from Christchurch when the earthquake hit. "The airport was immediately evacuated," explains tour promoter Gareth Craze in a statement. "We have become subsequently stranded at the Air New Zealand office complex, completely unable to get out of the airport or secure accommodation We have tried desperately to secure transport to the Wellington show, but regrettably all our options have been exhausted and we are now confronting the reality that we will be spending the night at the airport in Christchurch."
Queens of the Stone Age and the Melvins are due to play Australia's five-city Soundwave tour, which begins this Saturday in Brisbane.
At deadline, it was unclear what damage -- if any -- had been sustained by Christchurch's main music venues. Christchurch is home to the 50,000-capacity AMI Stadium and 9,000-capacity CBS Canterbury Arena (formerly known as Westpac Arena), both of which are operated by the locally-based management company Vbase.
The Vbase company's portfolio of venues also includes the Christchurch Convention Centre and Christchurch Town Hall for Performing Arts. A spokesperson for the firm could not be reached for comment.
At least 65 people are dead after a massive earthquake hit Christchurch on what New Zealand prime minister John Key has described as the country's "darkest day."
The quake struck at 12:51pm local time and measured 6.3. It's the second major quake to hit the southern New Zealand city in six months. The city center has been evacuated, as parts of the Christchurch Cathedral tumbled to the ground.