While it has been clear from the beginning that Donald Trump would likely have issues securing A-list talent for his inauguration ceremony, this supposition has become more and more real as the president-elect’s swearing-in ceremony looms closer.
Thus far, the presidential inaugural committee has only managed to book 16-year-old former America’s Got Talent singer Jackie Evancho, (some of) the Radio City Rockettes and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Not to throw unnecessary shade, but that’s pretty slim pickings for the inauguration of a man who will be holding the highest political office in the country.
The list of performers who have declined to perform, however, is growing longer on a daily basis as Trump organizers scramble to put together an event with enough pageantry to live up to its predecessors.
A compilation of the musicians and artists who will assuredly not be appearing at the inauguration are as follows — and judging from some of the comments that have been made by well-respected artists, Donald Trump may very well find himself with little more than a single rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” courtesy of Ms. Evancho.
And even though she was excluded from this list, rest assured: Beyoncé is also unlikely to make an appearance.
The DJ/singer recently posted a photo of the Capitol to his Instagram with the caption:
Hahahahaha, I was just asked by a booking agent if I would consider djing at one of the inaugural balls for #trump… Hahahahaha, wait, Hahahaha, really? I guess I’d DJ at an inaugural ball if as payment #trump released his tax returns. Also I would probably play public enemy and stockhausen remixes to entertain the republicans. I’m still laughing. Hahahaha. So #trump what do you think, I DJ for you and you release your tax returns?
Needless to say, it sounds like a hard “pass” from Moby.
Welsh singer Charlotte Church sent a tweet to Donald Trump yesterday which read, “Your staff have asked me to sing at your inauguration, a simple Internet search would show I think you’re a tyrant. Bye.”
Naturally, church added several poop emoji for effect.
While Perry probably hasn’t been approached by the Trump team to perform, her active and fervent campaigning for Hillary Clinton makes it pretty clear that we won’t be seeing her at the 2017 inauguration.
Just like Perry, Timberlake was a Clinton supporter during the campaign. He and wife Jessica Biel even hosted a Hillary fundraiser at their home. So, don’t expect Timberlake to croon any tunes for our president-elect.
The former British X-Factor star made it clear that the only way she would perform at the inauguration would be if she was allowed to sing the 1937 lynching protest song, “Strange Fruit,” made famous by Billie Holiday. Not surprisingly, the Trump team didn’t go for it. “There are many grey areas about the offer for me to perform that I’m unable to share right now, but I will not be singing,” Ferguson later confirmed in a statement.
Though Trump seems to be a fan of Elton’s music, the iconic British singer squashed any rumors that he would be singing for the president-elect. “Elton will not be performing at Trump’s inauguration,” one of his reps confirmed. Elton also noted that any use of his songs during Trump rallies “should not be seen as an endorsement of Donald Trump.”
The classical singer was originally on board to perform at the inauguration, but it was later confirmed that Bocelli would not be participating due to public backlash.
The country star was initially open to performing at the inauguration, but apparently reneged on this offer for unknown reasons.
The award-winning music producer (and stepfather to Bella and Gigi Hadid) made it very clear that any rumors surrounding his supposed involvement in Trump’s inauguration were untrue. “I was invited to participate and I politely declined,” Foster told PEOPLE in a statement. “I have no idea where this story came from.”
TMZ asked Gene Simmons outside of a restaurant if KISS would be performing at Trump’s inauguration, and Simmon’s wife, Shannon Tweed, made it abundantly clear where she stood on the matter by shouting “NO!” over and over. Simmons was somewhat tight-lipped on the matter, but said it was a moot point, as the band would be touring Europe during the inauguration anyway.
While it’s unclear whether or not Menzel has been approached to perform, the singer hasn’t been secretive about her contempt for Donald Trump. When she heard that the president-elect was having difficulty securing performers for his inauguration, Menzel responded by saying “I think it’s karma, baby.” She also added, “Maybe (Trump will) just have to sing something himself. He probably thinks he has a great voice; he thinks he does everything great.”
Although the rapper baffled everyone when he agreed to have a private meeting with Trump, a chairman for the inauguration committee confirmed that West would not be performing in Washington on Jan. 20. “No, No. Kanye and Donald are good friends,” chairman Tom Barrack told CNN. “Donald is a great admirer of Kanye, as we are all, but he is not performing at inauguration.”