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Little Mix cancels U.S. tour; Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson dump Diversity beaus

Little Mix, pictured from left to right: Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards
Little Mix, pictured from left to right: Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards
Getty Images

Little Mix has cancelled its first headlining North American tour, which was scheduled to take place at theaters in the U.S. and Canada from Sept. 10 to Oct. 11, 2014. Meanwhile, Little Mix members Jade Thirlwall and Jesy Nelson have called it quits with their respective boyfriends from the dance troupe Diversity.

In an Instagram message posted on July 3, 2014, Little Mix (whose other members are Perrie Edwards and Leigh-Anne Pinnock) made this statement: "As a group we decided that creating an amazing 3rd album had to take priority. We're so sorry to all the Mixers who bought tickets to come and see the show. As soon as the album is finished, we promise to make plans to return to the US and perform for you all.

"I think we need to remember that every decision we make is with our Mixers in mind. We're not cancelling forever we're postponing, we could do the tour n let other people do the album for us, but that's not what we're about, it isn't a little mix album if we're not involved and that takes time :) We love our Mixers more than anyone else, we were just as disappointed but have to think of the long term and Mixers around the world."

Around the same time that Little Mix's 2014 North American tour was cancelled, the Daily Mirror reported that Thirlwall and Nelson made some changes in their personal lives by breaking up with their respective boyfriends in Diversity.

In early 2012, Thirlwall began dating Diversity's Sam Chaske, and Nelson began dating Diversity's Jordan Banjo. Nelson and Banjo broke up in early 2013 but reunited by the end of the year.

Little Mix was the winner of "The X Factor" U.K. in 2011. Diversity was the winner of "Britain's Got Talent" in 2009.

Although Little Mix says its North American tour is "postponed," the reality is that the tour is cancelled, most likely due to low ticket sales. Artists in the music business make most of their money from touring. When an entire tour is cancelled, it's usually because of one of these three reasons: low ticket sales, health problems or personality conflicts.

Many artists can tour for most of the year and still find time to record a new album that year. (One Direction is just one example.) If ticket sales for Little Mix's tour had been going well, then the tour wouldn't have been cancelled. "Working on a new album" is a poor excuse to cancel a tour when fans will be disappointed. What Little Mix is probably too embarrassed to announce is that the group's first headlining tour of North America was going to flop. And so it was easier to cut their losses by cancelling the tour rather than lose more money by going on tour.

The reality is that although Little Mix's two albums so far ("DNA" and "Salute") have debuted in the Top 10 in the U.S., a high debut on the chart does not always equal longevity on the charts. And long-term sales are what matter more than a high debut in the first week. Little Mix's albums haven't even come close to being certified gold in the U.S., and Little Mix's singles have flopped on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the U.S.

Little Mix is able to headline arenas in the U.K. and Ireland, the two countries where the group is most popular. It's quite obvious that Little Mix is not anywhere near that level as a headliner in the U.S. and Canada. Little Mix previously toured North America as an opening act for select concerts on Demi Lovato's "Neon Lights" tour in early 2014. It remains to be seen what will happen if Little Mix actually does headline a concert tour of North America. Free promotional appearances at shopping malls don't count as a real headlining concert tour.