Garth Brooks has declined the idea of performing two of his five proposed Dublin Croke Park shows as matinees however Irish leader Enda Kenny said on Thursday evening there could be a potential solution on the horizon.
The country star said the afternoon shows were not feasible because the set was designed for night-time performances. The plan was put forward after a meeting between the promoter, Peter Aiken, and the Chief Executive of Dublin City Council, Owen Keegan.
The #BrookGate debacle, as it’s being referred to on Twitter, came about as Brooks had been scheduled to play five concerts on consecutive nights. However licenses were only granted for three of the shows. Brooks refused to go ahead with only three of the five shows.
During a press conference in Nashville, Tennessee, on Thursday Brooks said he would be willing to fly to Ireland, drop to his knees and “beg” Enda Kenny to break the stalemate and allow 400,000 fans who have purchased tickets to his Croke Park gigs.
He said “If the prime minister himself wants to talk to me I will crawl, swim, I will fly over there this weekend, sit in front of him, I will drop on my knees and beg for those 400,000 people.”
However he declined the idea of matinee performances as he said the stage was designed for a nighttime show.
The 52-year-old star, known for his high-octane shows, also said the schedule of the matinee shows may be too much.
"I don't know if I'm worried about them or me, as I'm getting older, I don't want to give a half-assed show," he said.
On Thursday night, following the press conference, Kenny said a potential solution had been put forward “so that the 400,000 fans of Garth Brooks will have their concert.”
“Some people from my own department were in touch with those involved, and I know that a potential solution has been put forward, and I think that’s with the imprimatur of the City Manager. And let’s see if that’s accepted and if that can happen.”
The Taoiseach (Government leader) hoped that “as the city manager and the promoter have come together, as the Gardaí and the city council and the residents I understand have withdrawn their objections, and as the representatives of the people down in the Dáil would like to see these things happen, I would hope this is one solution that might be acceptable.”
“So for those who are big followers of GB’s music, this would be a wonderful occasion.”
Kenny also added that the Irish government would not be interfering with the decision made by Dublin City Council.
He said “Insofar as the Government can assist here, the Government are quite willing to do that. It’s not a case of Mr Politician moving in on top of the law and saying you have to do this. We have processes and legal systems in the country here. At the same time, we have a very can-do attitude, and I think the progress made today by the City Manager, with the promoter, and all of the organizations involved, have put on the table now a potential solution, so let’s see.”
At the press conference on Thursday Brooks commented on Dublin’s “flawed” planning system.
He said “The system is flawed, I'm sorry it is not my country to say this, I'm going to take that back. It is my opinion that the Irish system got some weight on it and it buckled in," he said.
"I don't have a clue how we got here... It is a simple 'yes' (if they) open it up for five nights."