Wednesday 22 November 2017

How the rest of the world is reporting on the Garth Brooks saga

Stock Image Photo: Getty Images
Stock Image Photo: Getty Images
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

The fear of a detrimental impact on Ireland’s reputation was repeatedly voiced during the last week if the Garth Brooks concerts at Croke Park were to be cancelled.

Yet, despite the fact that none of the five shows appear to be going ahead at all this month, international media have yet to slate the country at large. lead with the line: ‘"It's five shows or none at all," Garth Brooks said last week, in response to the Dublin City Council's threat to cancel two of his five concerts planned for the city's Croke Park later this month. And after unsuccessful negotiations, the answer came today: none at all.”’

Largely balanced and with a good handle on the minutiae of the drawn out row, scarce mention of global superstars refusing to travel to our fair isle in the future can be seen.

The grand statement of Ireland’s leading man Enda – “Garth Brooks row was very badly handled” was of course the headline across a number of UK agencies but this, I believe, had more to do with the prominence of Mr Kenny (and the simplicity of the phrase) than genuine disdain for our ability to host large scale events.

Unsurprisingly though, the desperation of the distraught fans is the main focus while the Dublin City Council are largely painted in a not so favourable light.

“In a surprise turn that has left at least 400,000 concert ticket-holders in Ireland disappointed, the promoter of country superstar Garth Brooks’ five sold-out shows in Dublin announced Tuesday that the concerts have been cancelled after the city’s council denied to approve permits for two of the shows,” was the introduction into the piece on the saga.

And, of course, across the American media at large, ‘poor’ Garth Brooks is saved from any attribution of blame.

‘Garth Brooks cancels Ireland comeback shows after Dublin diss’ was one headline used by CNN which spent more time outlining his life rather than pointing fingers at the country superstar.

This afternoon, Aiken has released a letter from Garth Brooks to the promoter hoping that the “powers that be” in Ireland will be able to proceed with the five nights.

If these ‘powers’ do tell Garth, “thanks, but it is over”, the media worldwide may have something else to say.  

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