Avril Lavigne cancels performance at World Peace Concert

by Kyoko Shinmoto, Staff Writer

On June 14, the Hiroshima prefectural government announced that a performance by Avril Lavigne at the World Peace Concert has been canceled. The World Peace Concert, a series of performances by well-known artists, will be held from July 27 to August 5 in Hiroshima. The confirmation of the solo concert by Ms. Lavigne, 28, a popular singer from Canada, had been announced just three days ago. The prefectural government, indicating that this was the singer’s wish, has been stunned by the last-minute cancellation.

According to a government official, Ms. Lavigne agreed on June 8 to perform in Hiroshima. Her concert was then announced on June 11. But the next day, June 12, her agency in the United States contacted the prefectural government to say that it was difficult for her to make the trip to Japan.

The prefectural government continued to engage in negotiations with Ms. Lavigne’s representatives, but on the morning of June 14, her agency canceled her appearance. The official, who said that the government received no clear explanation as to the reason, remarked: “We were shocked, since the news that she wanted to cancel the concert came right after we had announced it.”

Ms. Lavigne’s concert had been planned for July 31 at the Hiroshima Green Arena in the city center. With the starting date for ticket sales, June 16, looming, the prefecture went ahead and canceled the event. The tickets and posters for the concert had not yet been printed. Toshiyuki Kawakami, chief of citizens affairs for the prefecture, apologized, saying, “I’m sorry that we were unable to meet the expectations of Hiroshima residents.”

(Originally published on June 15, 2013)