On Friday, January 20, Donald Trump will take office as the 45th President of the United States. The inauguration marks the start of his four-year term as the leader of the United States — a responsibility that many say makes him the most powerful man in the world.

As is tradition, a series of balls will take place during the week of the inauguration — a way of easing the president into his new role and celebrating the peaceful transition of power.

But if you’re looking for global superstars that week, you’ll be disappointed as the list of A-list celebrities rejecting the invitation is now longer than your arm. And it features two former Eurovision entrants.

Speaking to Il Corriere della Sera, Italian operatic pop trio Il Volo — who recently finished second in the annual Eurovision Top 250 — explained why they declined the offer.

“We never agreed with Trump’s ideas, we can’t support a man who based his political rise on populism as well as xenophobic and racist behaviour”. There’s no Grande amore for Donald, then!

Piero Barone, Ignazio Boschetto and Eurovision’s Next Top Male Model 2015 Gianluca Ginoble spoke very frankly.

“We realize we’re an example for many, especially young people, which is why we share our thinking. We could not sing for a person with whom we share almost nothing…Even if American politics seems far away from us, the social aspect of what happens there concerns us.”

The success of the trio in the United States is for all the world to see. Their concert planned on March 4 at Radio City Music Hall in New York is already sold out. They aren’t worried that their comments will lead to a backlash among their American fans.

“We don’t think that our future depends on this,” they say. “Those who love us will follow us anyway. In our concerts we do not talk about politics.”

They’re not alone in saying “No thank you!”

French-Canadian superstar Celine Dion has declined an offer to perform during the President-elect’s big day.

Celine, who lost her brother and husband around this time one year ago, has not issued a statement.

According to The Wrap, Trump’s long-time friend Steve Wynn (the Las Vegas hotelier) had promised to book the iconic singer for the ball. But alas…her heart will NOT go on with Donald!

At the time of writing, only four acts have been officially announced for the inauguration: Former America’s Got Talent contestant Jackie Evancho, the Talladega Marching Tornadoes (a marching band), the iconic dance troop The Rockettes and the 360-member Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

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Mariam
Guest

Hey there! I realize this is sort of off-topic however I needed to ask. Does building a well-established website such as yours take a large amount of work? I’m completely new to blogging but I do write in my journal everyday. I’d like to start a blog so I will be able to share my personal experience and thoughts online. Please let me know if you have any suggestions or tips for new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

frances van siclen
Guest

I caution Il Volo and Andrea Bocelli to tread very carefully on the American political scene. I and many others who love Il Volo will give them a pass this time as we enjoy them too much to do otherwise but be aware that we feel saddened that you will not perform for someone we voted for and respect very much. Next time we may not be so magnanimous ! We feel very greatly for Trump and are very happy to see Obama go !!!! God bless you boys and stay safe !

Kaou
Guest
Kaou

Honestly, you need to stop. x’D I’m neither agreeing or disagreeing with your views, however, to say something like that is very ignorant. The votes were very split, and you seem to be acting as if you speak for the entire country.

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

Well, there is a secession movement… Removing California from the popular vote equation is basically used as an indication of why the electoral college is good. It was created so that large-population “echo chamber” states can’t dominate smaller ones through sheer numbers. As it is, California alone makes up 1/5 of the electoral votes needed to win- more than any other two states combined (other than any combination of New York, Texas, and Florida). Basically, a popular vote would do just that- take out all of middle America and focus the power completely on the coasts and the major cities.… Read more »

Lindsey
Guest
Lindsey

@pollaski or anyone else who can answer: Why do you guys keep taking California out of the equation? Is California not real? Are the people there not US citizens? Does someone’s political opinion suddenly become irrelevant just because they live in California? I feel like Democrats would love to take out half of middle America too but they can’t, so why do you guys keep taking out California? On topic: Whether or not you agree with Il Volo’s stance, I think it was a good move. There’s so much division in politics right now that taking part on either side… Read more »

Hi
Guest
Hi

@Shannon said “Some of his supporters may be IV fans.” and, @mawnck , Yes some of them are! If you don’t know it then you don’t know/follow them. And if you do not know enough of them to contextualize their words on what you based your opinion? Look their instagram profile and you will see that they are friends with proud Trump supported. Something people of every political side seem to don’t get is that you have no need to think “with us, or against us!” That’s childish. But, @Carlos said “If you perform for any President, it means you… Read more »

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

” they will lose, and continue to lose.”

Guess we’ll see, huh.

Official Månsters Association
Guest
Official Månsters Association

I don’t get how this is related to Eurovision. Sure, former Eurovision entries are related to this, but does it have anything to do with the contest or the event coming up? As an American, now that Trump won the election, reading or hearing his name makes me vomit, xD.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Wow, 53 comments about an article that has nothing whatsoever to do with the Eurovision Song Contest. 🙂

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

@mawnck Take out California and Trump wins by 2 million votes. Which is exactly why the electoral college exists in the first place. And until the Democrats realize that Trump’s win had nothing to do with racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, or any other fun PC buzzword they like to throw around, they will lose, and continue to lose. 1,000 Democat elected positions lost nationwide since Obama’s inaguration. The biggest flip in House history in 2010. The biggest flip in the Senate since the Great Depression in 2014. The “Blue Wall” being cracked for the first time in 28 years. But… Read more »

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

“When you spend your entire life acting like middle America is nothing but a bunch of stupid bro-country listening rubes, don’t be surprised that when the election comes, they spit in your face.” Middle America PROVED that that’s *exactly* what they are on November 8th, 2016. Spit away. The strategy going forward isn’t to be nicer to the fascists in hopes that they’ll suddenly come to their senses and vote for the Democrats. That doesn’t work. Just ask President Obama. They’re too brainwashed by the outrage-and-pander right-wing media to even recognize when people are trying to be nice to them.… Read more »

Pollaski
Guest
Pollaski

I hope everyone reads comments like @mawnck’s carefully. Because right there is the mindset that got Trump elected in the first place. When you spend your entire life acting like middle America is nothing but a bunch of stupid bro-country listening rubes, don’t be surprised that when the election comes, they spit in your face.

Rock Me
Guest
Rock Me

Bad move by both of them.

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

@mad-professor “I can’t work out if you’re being hypothetical or you actually believe that’s true…” Strictly hypothetical. The BBC can’t get anybody because representing UK at Eurovision is a bad career move for a UK performer. It isn’t because most performers hate their guts. (Well, except Josh Dubovie – he probably does …) @Shannon “Some of his supporters may be IV fans.” NO, they are NOT. And they never will be, unless Il Volo suddenly switches to doing nothing but “Bro Country” music. Turning down that invite is just as good for their career as it is for every single… Read more »

Shannon
Guest
Shannon

I don’ t know whether it was a good thing or a bad thing for Il Volo to decline the inaugural invitation. Who really knows? But, I don’t think it was a good thing to give an explanation. No explanation was necessary. IV should remember they are not only performers but a business enterprise. Trump received over 60 million votes. Some of his supporters may be IV fans. How tolerant are they going to be of their explanation. I’m surprised their managers would allow them to make any comments on their refusal. It’s not a good thing business-wise.

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

@Jonas:
Have you seen Celine Dion live? I haven’t. She must be amazing!

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

@jms: I don’t want to be misunderstood. When I speak about prejudice and racism, it’s not only the country, it’s the colour of the skin, the opinions you have, if you’re rich or poor etc. It’s not only example:”You are American, he is Mexican”. As for xenophobia, let me be clear: I am not in favour of drug trafficing or terrorism or people who enter a country illegally and do such things. I support people that come legally to a country in order to find a better life or escape from situations such as those we see in the Middle… Read more »

Racal
Guest
Racal

@Chicken Kyiv?: What a great way to manipulate numbers, you should be a politician! 😉 You know what they say: “If you torture numbers hard enough, they’ll say whatever you want”.

Hillary won the popular vote, full stop. Anywhere else in the world, she would have been elected. We have a messed up election system here in the US (originally designed to give more electoral weight to the slave states), that’s the only reason she didn’t go through. No need to torture the numbers any further: a majority of Americans didn’t want Trump in the WH.

mad-professor
Guest
mad-professor

@mawnck
‘Imagine BBC trying to find their Eurovision act, except that literally everyone in the entertainment industry HATES the BBC’s guts with a purple passion.’

I can’t work out if you’re being hypothetical or you actually believe that’s true…

Carlos
Guest
Carlos

I’m an American fan of ESC and am happy to see Il Volo and Celine making the right position not to perform for Trump. He’s a horrible man and, here, if you perform for any President, it means you support their views.

Now, if any of my fave ESC performers decide to perform for him at any time during his presidency, I’m done with them! (Please, Sergey L., don’t let Putin force you to sing for Trump!)

Graph
Guest
Graph

I respect artists’ decision to decline invitations. Although I think many of Trump’s proposals have been seriously misclassified in popular culture, I fully understand the desire to avoid performing at an inauguration if you think that inauguration commences a downward spiral.

jj
Guest
jj

“Virtually all singers, showmen, stars in US are Democrats and not Republicans”

There are actually quite a few who are closet Republicans because they know they will not get work if they don’t follow the Hollywood-line.
There is major discrimination if you are not liberal and Democrat in the industry.

Julian
Guest
Julian

Virtually all singers, showmen, stars in US are Democrats and not Republicans. After such bitterly divided election no wonder nobody wants to sing at Trump’s inauguration. If Clinton were the winner, the party would have been sky high and packed with A stars. Madonna even made a promise to Clinton voters in case of winning.

Fatima
Guest
Fatima

It must have been tempting for Il Volo. Whoever does perform are going to get a huge amount of exposure given the absence of over substantial acts.

dutchie
Guest
dutchie

@denis
And which Russian act should Trump go for? Pussy Riot?

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

Forgetting about the politics for a moment, I just want to shout out loud that Celine Dion actually does sing live at her shows, and does it amazingly well. The woman is a marvel. It doesn’t surprise me in the least she won’t touch Trump with a ten foot barge-pole – her impassioned plea on behalf of the Hurricane Katrina victims ten years ago ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_8Y0JhSSGo ) showed me she actually has a heart and is capable of empathy. Not very Trump-esque. Singing live is not a pre-requisite anyhow, remember Beyoncé miming the national anthem at Obama’s inauguration four years… Read more »

Denis
Guest
Denis

The reason Måns wasn’t asked is because he is unknown in U.S as is every ESC winner or participant. Because ESC itself is unknown in US. But of course the notorious Måns and Sweden bashers Polegend Gadgarina and Avstriya( previously know as Osterrike) will twist it into it’s Måns himself and his supposed flop that’s the reason behind it. It’s not, and these two people are still bitter over his win and can’t understand why popera wasn’t the winner. Il Volo already had some exposure in US before ESC, and are fairly known among the “classical list” listeners. So that’s… Read more »

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

So, uh, Ern … you are one of those people who actually BELIEVES what Trump puts in his tweets? Bless your heart! Jackie Evancho’s latest album was a Christmas album. Her sales increased because of Christmas, and have since cratered, because … not Christmas. Il Volo mainly appeals to the NPR crowd, who as you probably know are 99.97% Clinton supporters. This won’t cost Il Volo one single dollar. In fact, there aren’t enough Trump-supporting Il Volo fans to fill a phone booth, let alone Radio City Music Hall. Them appearing at the inauguration would have alienated far more of… Read more »

jms
Guest
jms

@AngieP, you’re right, but don’t forget that our ancestors came to the US and didn’t look for a handout, didn’t traffic drugs, and weren’t terrorists.
If you want people like that living next to you and you want to support them, be my guest, but keep them living in your neighborhood.
I’ll take the ones who are vetted and become citizens the right way, like my ancestors did and if that makes me a xenophobe, I’m proud to be a xenophobe.

dutchie
Guest
dutchie

@avstriya
I’m not sure Il Volo’s Eurovision participation has anything to do with this, they were already relatively well known in the US before Eurovision and let’s be fair, no one watches Eurovision over there anyway.

Good on them for refusing to perform, I think Andrea Bocelli declined the invitation before them and probably Trump’s team went for a similar sounding artist after that (although obviously not half as talented, but what do they know).

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

Back at ESC:Trump is searching for non American acts to sing at his inauguration? I didn’t expect that. With all these comments he has made about refugees and non native Americans, it doesn’t surprise me that many artists don’t accept his invitation. Really happy both Il Volo and Celine Dion denied the invitation. @Ern:Il Volo already have a large fan base as @Robyn Gallagher points out correctly. Don’t forget before they participate at ESC, they were known in Europe as well as in America, particularly South America, with lots of fans. They also organise successful concerts there. They don’t need… Read more »

AngieP
Guest
AngieP

For me, all these things Trump hass said over his campaign don’t relate to 2017. We are supposed to live in a world with no prejudice, no racism, no xenophobia, a world where people respect each other. I know it’s not obvious everywhere in the world, but for a country like USA which is considered to be a modern society, open-minded it should be. Don’t forget most of the population in the US consists of people that are not native americans. This country is build by people from different places with different ways of life and different opinions. With Trump,… Read more »

Vladimir Putin a.k.a. the ULTIMATE thug of the Universe
Guest
Vladimir Putin a.k.a. the ULTIMATE thug of the Universe

Thanks God we will live in a better world in 2017. Now wars, no geopolitical games.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

@ Avstriya – no1curr about Manny Zelmerlow outside of Sweden anymore, look at the state of his career now. He barely charts in his own country one year after winning the Eurovision… A massive flop. And he didn’t even win the televote, for heaven’s sake… Il Volo remain unbothered with their resounding victory among the public and deserved GLOBAL fame.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

@ Adam – hun… Il Volo have top 10 albums in the US, how many other Eurovision artists can claim that apart from their fellow Trump mudslinger Céline Dion?

(Lemme add that Clinton is even more trash so let’s not.)

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

asdfghjkl; NOT a damn Mormon choir singing for Trumpster. He should’ve just asked a certain closeted Russian singer-songwriter-producer, they all seem to love him in that part of the world anyway.

Polegend Godgarina
Guest
Polegend Godgarina

He should ask Ani Lorak, she’s a GREAT supporter.

IV_Benny
Guest
IV_Benny

Avstriya,They were famous in America even before the Eurovision.They went to American Idol,Ellen show,toured with Babra Streisand,2 grammy nominations,They won the gold award in America when they were teenagers and much more…

Chicken Kyiv?
Guest
Chicken Kyiv?

@racal I already covered that all of Hillarys “winning margin” in the 50 states combined total came entirely from California where she won by 4 million.

It’s academic since the “national popular vote” doesn’t really exist. It’s 50 separate elections of which trump won 30. There’s no requirement for states to even hold a public vote although currently all do.

James
Guest
James

@Avstriya: What’s your issue with Mans?

@jj: Celine always sings her songs live during her concerts.

Avstriya
Guest
Avstriya

Why were Il Volo invited but the resounding winner of Eurovision 2015 not?

I don’t get it. Beloved by international juries across Europe and yet not famous?? What is wrong with Mans Zelmerlöw?!

Seems like Il Volo are the heroes of our times now. Voted for by peasants and low-lives, rejected by the Eurovision establishment. Now on top of the world. Just like Donald.

pique
Guest
pique

Good for you Celine !!!

Racal
Guest
Racal

@Chicken Kyiv?: Your analysis could potentially work if only Hillary hadn’t won the general vote… She got like 3 million more votes than Trump.

Chicken Kyiv?
Guest
Chicken Kyiv?

Evidence should read influence 😛

Chicken Kyiv?
Guest
Chicken Kyiv?

The world of celebrity and the world of good economics rarely mix.

Donald Trump won because he had the support of ordinary Americans outside New York and California, these celebrities are learning just how little evidence they have.

Hillary told coal workers in Ohio, Pennsylvania and west Virginia she’d put them out of jobs. But then had Katy Perry and lady gaga perform their to win them back. Guess what all 3 went for trump

Rhy
Guest
Rhy

Croatian 2Cellos also declined

Racal
Guest
Racal

Celine Dion’s late husband, René, was Syrian. With all the cr*p Trump has said about refugees, I surely hope she refused to sing for him!

ESC123
Guest
ESC123

I found out Grande amore has 79,196,676 views, I wonder if Grande amore is the most watched Eurovision song on Youtube Channel. Alexander Rybak-FAIRYTALE has 78,754,514 views as well.

I don’ t know how Trump can rule ths US, even now the public are against him, what happened when he actually rule? Nightmare..

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

Ern: Seriously? Il Volo already have a large and loyal American fan base. They have another big American tour planned for March and can comfortably fill iconic venues such as Radio City Music Hall.

jms
Guest
jms

At least Dion has the sense to keep her mouth shut rather than trying to impress half of the population while alienating the other half.

Ern
Guest
Ern

One other thing: Il Volo is being quite stupid.

Singing at Trump’s inauguration would have significantly affected their exposure in the US. Jackie Evancho is certainly enjoying a spike in her record sales, and she’s already reasonably well known. Just what do you think would have happened to an unknown act like Il Volo?

If they disliked Trump’s policies so much, they would have had a much bigger platform (after the inauguration) to express their disapproval and present a case to their fans.