SeaWorld continues to come under scrutiny as more and more musicians back out of its Brews, Bands and BBQ concert series amid petitions and protests stemming from the documentary film “Blackfish.”
Now, Martina McBride, Cheap Trick, REO Speedwagon and Trisha Yearwood are among those cancelling their scheduled performances at the Orlando marine theme park after pressure from animal rights groups and petitions on Change.org citing SeaWorld’s alleged track record with in terms of treating its marine life. McBride was the newest artist to back out of the show, revealing in a Facebook post today (Dec. 14) that “given all the issues that have aired recently,” it wasn’t in her best interest to play the show.
McBride follows REO Speedwagon, which announced the cancellation on Twitter yesterday (Dec. 14), while Yearwood confirmed her departure from the series Dec. 12 and Cheap Trick Dec. 11. A Change.org petition for McBride to cancel her show had reached over 20,000 signatures before meeting its goal.
The musicians follow Heart, Barenaked Ladies and Willie Nelson as other musicians that originally agreed to perform during the concert series but have since withdrawn amid public pressure. As it stands, only Justin Moore, Scotty McCreery and .38 Special still remain on the bill, though all have corresponding petitions to cancel as well.
Much of the cancellations stem from the “Blackfish” film, which was released earlier this year. Discussing the captivity of killer whale Tilikum and its role in the deaths of three individuals, while decrying SeaWorld’s alleged practices with many of its marine animals held at its parks, the film was included on the short list for Best Documentary at the Oscars last week.
SeaWorld has dismissed the allegations in “Blackfish,” calling the film inaccurate.