Several dates have been slashed from the American Idols Live! Tour, which kicked off just before the Fourth of July weekend with a stop in Michigan on Thursday. As the season-nine contestants continue to make their way across the country, an updated tour schedule posted on the "American Idol" website shows that seven dates have been canceled.
The revised concert schedule also reflects an earlier finale for the tour, wrapping now on August 31 in Indianapolis instead of on September 16 in Portland, Maine, as previously planned. Shows in cities including Buffalo, New York; Portland, Oregon; Kansas City, Missouri; and Cleveland have all been nixed. Canadian stops in Winnipeg, Manitoba and Toronto have also been cut.
The tour, featuring finalists from the ninth season of the amateur talent juggernaut, highlights "Idol" champ Lee DeWyze and runner-up (and fan fave) Crystal Bowersox. A spokesperson for Live Nation confirmed the cancellations to The Associated Press but declined to explain the reason for the schedule revamp.
The axed American Idols Live! Tour dates follow a rash of canceled shows by several major musical acts scheduled to hit the road this summer. The once-popular, female-fronted Lilith Fair was recently forced to scale back, cutting 10 tour dates because of poor ticket sales. Christina Aguilera postponed her tour until 2011 due to scheduling issues, as did U2, who pushed back their 360 Tour while lead singer Bono recovers from surgery.
Although no official reason has been given for the new tour schedule, interest in "American Idol" appears to be on the wane. Twenty-four million viewers tuned in to see DeWyze get crowned as the season-nine victor, but that tally marked the lowest finale rating since the final episode of the show's 2002 debut season. In addition, DeWyze and Bowersox's post-"Idol" offerings have seen slow sales; the season-nine singers have fared significantly worse on the charts than the season-eight breakout stars, winner Kris Allen and runner-up Adam Lambert.
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