Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Garth Brooks: Concert promoter Peter Aiken flies to US in last ditch attempt to save Croke Park shows

Country star Garth Brooks
Country star Garth Brooks

Concert promoter Peter Aiken has flown to the US in a last ditch attempt to persuade Garth Brooks to go ahead with the three permitted concerts in Croke Park.

Mr Aiken left Ireland early this morning on a flight to the US, so that he could meet the country and western singer face-to-face.

The chief executive of the Labour Relations Commission Kieran Mulvey confirmed this morning that Mr Aiken decided to be proactive when communications through emails and phone calls were not having a desired outcome.

Mr Mulvey told Newstalk: “There’s a time difference involved in all of this but maybe by this evening, something will have emerged.”

Mr Aiken left Ireland this morning to see if Garth Brooks “would reconsider what he was going to do... and maybe revisit this,” Mr Mulvey said

The mediator said while Garth Brooks’ ultimatum of “five concerts or none at all” was reported in the press, perhaps the statement was made in the heat of the moment.

“Garth Brooks is a country and western singer, he’s not a diplomat. We all say things.”

“There is a logistics issue, there is equipment [for the concert] that needs to be brought over here... a degree of persuasiveness is still to be exerted.”

Mr Aiken will today fight “to maximise what has been done,” Mr Mulvey said.

“[Peter Aiken] has gone. There are friends of this country in the US that may persuade Mr Brooks to go ahead with three concerts.”

Mr Mulvey said an official or dignitary in Ireland should make a public statement to Garth Brooks to tell him formally that he’s welcome to do three more concerts in Ireland, even in a year’s time, if he wishes to.

“He’s going to announce a world tour. It would be useful if the Lord Mayor made a statement to say to Garth Brooks that he is welcome to the country for three more concerts.”

Meanwhile, Lord Mayor Christy Burke said: "The whole nub of this is the amount of fans that have purchased tics, I would not like to see them disappointed".

"Representatives of Aiken will go to the States. They’re going yesterday, if you like, asap.”

“Promoters are frantic to get to him and persuade him to do the five concerts”

Further reading

Garth Brooks concerts: Fresh legal challenge to stop ALL FIVE Croke Park gigs

Lord Mayor seeking Brooks solution

Garth Brooks gigs ruling condemned

Crisis talks in bid to save Garth Brooks concerts

Garth Brooks being 'stupid' over 'all or nothing' ultimatum, says head of Croke Park residents group

Council cancels Garth Brooks dates

All Garth Brooks Croke Park concerts 'could be cancelled'

How Garth Brooks-mania is giving Jason Hughes his busiest year ever  

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