Miley Cyrus managed to shock Charlotte fans on Monday night without even setting foot onstage. Barely half an hour before the pop star’s scheduled concert at Time Warner Cable Arena, she abruptly canceled.
“Cyrus has been diagnosed with flu and doctors have ordered her to rest,” concert promoter Live Nation said in a press release. A notice posted at the arena by Ticketmaster said the show will not be rescheduled.
Shortly before 6:30 p.m., arena employees started dismantling balloon columns decorating the venue and turning hordes of mostly female fans away, sparking a frenzy of tweeting and mass disappointment.
“I showed up, spent all my money on gas, got there and found out the show was canceled,” said Molly Crunkleton, 19. She said she drove in from Belmont and had just paid for parking when a security guard told her the show was called off. “I’m very angry right now.”
Karoline Jumper and Lauren Olds, both 16, had come down from Winston-Salem with their mothers for the concert after begging for tickets and then spending three months getting psyched up for the show.
“We were walking to the concert when my friend texted,” Jumper said as she stood outside the arena, still trying to process the news. “On the signs, it said ‘refunds available,’ but where’s the refund for my outfit that I bought, or for my nails or the gas or hotel?”
But not all concertgoers were upset.
“It’s just a bunch of angry 15-year-olds in short-shorts,” said Katie Levans, 28, who had scored free tickets and had planned to attend with a friend. “Now we get to go drink, because we’re the only ones old enough to do that. So that’s the new plan.”
(Anyone who had chosen to be at the concert but was also interested in the NCAA men’s basketball final between Kentucky and University of Conneticut also had to have been at least a little relieved, since the 9 p.m. game was in direct conflict.)
Monday’s cancellation came six days after Cyrus’ beloved dog, Floyd, was attacked and killed by a coyote. At a show in Boston last Thursday, the singer dedicated Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” to the pup and wept through the performance.
Prior to her loss, the 21-year-old’s “Bangerz” tour had made headlines mostly for its risque content, which includes twerking showgirls, revealing costumes, profanity and drug references.
This would have been Cyrus’ first Charlotte concert since 2009, when she came here the day after her 17th birthday and performed as her then-Disney Channel alter ego, Hannah Montana.
Refunds for tickets to her Charlotte show will be available at the point of ticket purchase; tickets purchased online or by phone will be automatically refunded, Live Nation said in its statement.
Cyrus’ concert at PNC Arena in Raleigh on Tuesday will go on as planned, Live Nation said. Staff writers Andrew Dunn and Cleve Wootson contributed.