Active Mountain Entertainment has indicated that country star Reba McEntire will not be performing at the Merritt Mountain Music Festival this year, despite the announcement in December that the artist was booked for the festival.
According to an Active Mountain press release, McEntire’s management informed Mountainfest that due to a scheduling conflict, the star was forced to cancel the July 9 engagement along with others.
Mountainfest organizers were offered a performance for the following weekend, but decided against changing the date of the festival.
“Reba’s cancellation does not justify a change of date and the aggravation that it would create for the folks that have already booked their holiday time off,” said Claude Lelievre, Active Mountain president.
In an interview with the Herald on Monday, Lelievre said that country star Craig Morgan, who was announced in December alongside McEntire, is still confirmed to play at the festival.
Tickets for the festival have been on sale since mid-November prior to any artist announcements. Lelievre said he is not able to give specifics on the number of tickets sold thus far, but that the sales are just as good as they were at this point in 2009. He does not feel that McEntire’s cancellation has made any difference.
“It’s hasn’t changed anything. People are waiting to see who’s going to replace her.”
Though no further announcements have been made, Lelievre is promising to announce more headliners shortly.
“It’s a day to day affair with artists who are doing their routing. They’re dealing with 12 or 15 dates at a time and they’ve got a lot a details to go through,” said Lelievre. “I’m just waiting for them. Our offers have been approved but they’re finalizing their touring.”
Lelievre also said he is not concerned that in previous years a line-up of artists had been confirmed by this point.
“In general we started much earlier, in about June and this year we only started in October, so everything is a little behind. We have had a couple of years where it was March before we got a headliner. It’s not really unusual, but because it’s the revival of the Festival it could create some insecurity.”
The Festival, which was cancelled last year after 17 years, is scheduled for July 7-10.