The news that Heart canceled a SeaWorld show comes on the heels of both Willie Nelson and Barenaked Ladies canceling upcoming shows as well. SeaWorld spokesman Nick Gollattscheck said that they are “disappointed a small group of misinformed individuals was able to deny fans” the concerts, but they “respect the bands' decisions.”
“Blackfish” tackled the killing of SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau by a SeaWorld orca, and the fallout has been building. The CNN documentary raised serious questions about keeping killer whales in captivity. Since the documentary aired in October, many viewers have started online petitions asking musicians to nix plans to play at the venue.
Heart canceled the SeaWorld gig and announced the decision via their Twitter page. They didn't elaborate on the decision, other than to say it was because they had watched “Blackfish.” Both Willie Nelson and Barenaked Ladies have cited the film as the reason behind their show changes as well.
SeaWorld denies the allegations made in “Blackfish” and have put out an open invitation for artists to come tour their facility and see for themselves how the animals are treated. SeaWorld says that the film “focuses on a handful of incidents over our long history at the exclusion of everything else.” They maintain that all the good SeaWorld has done has been ignored.
Was Heart's canceling of the SeaWorld show the right call? Will there be more musicians following suit?