Barenaked Ladies cancel SeaWorld concert due to 'Blackfish'

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"Blackfish" is turning out to be an extremely influential documentary. Now, the Canadian band Barenaked Ladies has canceled a concert at SeaWorld in Orlando after viewing the CNN documentary about killer whales.

Although the band had previously announced that they would perform at SeaWorld's "Bands, Brews & BBQ" event in February 2014, the Barenaked Ladies quickly faced a negative reaction from fans. An online petition quickly gained around 10,000 signatures, enough to attract BNL's attention.

A follow-up notice on Wednesday (Nov. 27) indicated that plans had changed. The band posted a message to BNL's official website and to Facebook reads:

Hey everybody. We've talked things over, and decided not to play at Seaworld at this time. We watch movies too, ya know! Have you seen Star Trek IV? It's quite good.  Kidding ... We sometimes do that. 

This is a complicated issue, and we don't claim to understand all of it, but we don't feel comfortable proceeding with the gig at this time. The Seaworld folks have been gracious, and extended us invitations to the park to learn more about what they do, and how they do it.  

We encourage anybody and everybody to get involved with a charity organization they feel passionate about. We here at Barenaked Ladies have made a decision based on what we feel. It's not about money, or petitions, or press ... But it is about our fans. We listen to them, and they're important to us. Their sensibilities resonate with ours, and have for decades now. We've grown up together. Ultimately though, we made the decision that WE feel good about. 

Thanks for all of your support. We'll see you all at a mutually agreeable concert venue in the near future! 

Love
Barenaked Ladies


The movie in question is the CNN documentary, "Blackfish," a look at issues and dangers associated with keeping Orca whales in captivity. Due to a highly publicized trainer death at SeaWorld in 2010, the world-famous water park was the focus of much of the film.

As for SeaWorld, CNN reports that the park has agreed to remove Barenaked Ladies from the concert schedule. Other musical acts, including Willie Nelson, REO Speedwagon, Martina McBride and more are still scheduled to perform.

Fan reaction to the new decision has been mostly positive, with messages of support appearing on social media. As one Twitter user, @yay4bnl, put it:

"I'm proud of my fave band this morning, for deciding against playing a SeaWorld gig. Those BNLs, they're stand-up dudes."

Barenaked Ladies are currently on tour in Great Britain.

Photo/Video credit: Getty Images