With January 20th coming up fast, President-elect Donald Trump has been struggling to find performers for his big inauguration in Washington, D.C.
While one ambitious, 16-year-old singer named Jackie Evancho will be performing the “Star Spangled Banner,” very few A-listers have agreed to perform, either because they fear being black-listed or because they disagree so strongly with Trump’s politics.
Trump seems to be taking it in stride:
The so-called "A" list celebrities are all wanting tixs to the inauguration, but look what they did for Hillary, NOTHING. I want the PEOPLE!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2016
But it still begs the question which A-listers is he talking about?
So without further ado, here are the celebs that have officially refused to perform at Trump’s inauguration so far:
Sir Elton John
Legendary British performer Sir Elton John was the first rumored performer for the big day, but that was quickly extinguished by the man himself. He told The Guardian:
“I don’t really want my music to be involved in anything to do with an American election campaign. I’m British. I’ve met Donald Trump, he was very nice to me, it’s nothing personal, his political views are his own, mine are very different, I’m not a Republican in a million years. Why not ask Ted f*cking Nugent? Or one of those f*cking country stars? They’ll do it for you.”
KISS frontman Gene Simmons
According to TMZ, Gene Simmons was asked if KISS would perform, but some political divides in the family led to a hard “no” from the frontman.
Simmons has praised The Donald in the past, saying he was “the truest political animal I’ve ever seen onstage.”
Longtime friend and Las Vegas hotelier Steve Wynn allegedly promised that the French-Canadian singer would perform on January 20th, but according to The Wrap, she’s definitely passing—and so is Mr. Wynn.
A rep told The Wrap:
“Mr. Wynn was not asked to book specific performers for the inauguration, nor did he ever a make a commitment to find specific performers.”
Famous Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli initially accepted Trump’s invitation to perform but received vicious backlash for it.
The rumor is that the outrage got so bad that he had to back out for fear of risking his entire career. Trump’s people told Rolling Stone that the president-elect had declined the singer’s offer to appear, but either way, Bocelli isn’t performing.
New York Magazine’s Brian Feldman joked on Twitter that the group would perform, which started some serious speculation:
the chainsmokers are performing at the inauguration
— brian feldman (@bafeldman) December 15, 2016
Not long after, a representative denied that the two-deejay crew would be appearing at the Inauguration.
Garth Brooks initially showed interest in playing some music for Trump’s crowd, telling TMZ that “It’s always about serving. It’s what you do.”
But Brooks later told Variety that he backed out.
Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars, Katy Perry, Aretha Franklin
These four mega-famous stars were apparently highly sought after by the inaugural crew – despite being big-time Hillary Clinton supporters.
There were even rumors that Donald Trump was willing to offer ambassadorships if they participated.
It’s almost 100% certain that none of these four will perform, despite being offered big bucks, according to insiders from The Wrap.
David Foster, producer of mega-hit songs like Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” and many others, was rumored to have a big part of the whole event.
According to Page Six, Foster was supposed to organize the Inauguration performances but that story quickly unraveled. He told reporters through an agent:
“I was invited to participate and I politely declined. I have no idea where this story came from.”
With less than a month left before the big day, there will surely be more performers to grace this list, so keep your eyes peeled.