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Concert cancelled after front man collapses

Isaac Hockley of HM Productions  walks through the Cranbrook Curling Club Wednesday, July 10, the morning after 1,000 concert-goers were left stunned by Nazareth’s lead singer, Dan McCafferty, collapsing on stage seconds into the concert. The production company  is providing full refunds — which can be obtained at Bridge Interiors. - Submitted
Isaac Hockley of HM Productions walks through the Cranbrook Curling Club Wednesday, July 10, the morning after 1,000 concert-goers were left stunned by Nazareth’s lead singer, Dan McCafferty, collapsing on stage seconds into the concert. The production company is providing full refunds — which can be obtained at Bridge Interiors.
— image credit: Submitted

Concert promoters are offering profuse apologies after the Nazareth concert in Cranbrook came to an abrupt end on Tuesday, July 9, almost as soon as it began.

The Scottish hard rock band was set to begin its western Canadian tour at the Cranbrook Curling Centre on Tuesday night, but 30 seconds into the first song, front man Dan McCafferty collapsed on stage, requiring urgent medical attention. The rest of the concert was cancelled.

The band was 90 minutes late coming to the stage; set to begin at 9:30 p.m., the first song wasn't played until 11 p.m.

Now concert promoters HM Productions, run by Cranbrook locals Isaac Hockley and Jody McInnes, are handing out refunds and offering apologies to disappointed concertgoers.

"We just want to apologize to everybody who came out to support us. You can get your money back; all you've got to do is bring your ticket stubs in to Bridge Interiors," Hockley told the Townsman on Wednesday.

Some concertgoers were angry that the concert was cancelled, but Hockley said it was completely out of promoters' control.

"We've got to remember we're talking about a person here. Number one is his safety," he said.

McCafferty, 66, suffered a lung problem on stage Tuesday night, Hockley explained. He collapsed because he wasn't getting enough air.

"He is stable. We're not sure what's going on with the rest of the tour; that hasn't been disclosed yet," said Hockley.

The band was set to perform in Whitecourt, Alberta, on Thursday, July 11.

HM Productions is committed to providing refunds for everybody with a ticket stub.

"All of the people are getting their money back, 100 per cent. That's the first thing on the list, and we're going to take the hit from it," Hockley said.

The promoters will lose money from the event, he went on, and they won't be able to bring any bands to Cranbrook for a few months.

"We want to make sure everybody understands that we're taking a really big hit here. It's a contract; we pay a deposit to have Nazareth here. We get them and whatever happens after that, that's what happens," said Hockley, adding that promoters have other expenses such as sound, facility rental and insurance.

"After this hit, we have to go back to our other jobs. Our company is in the minus now.

"We are going to take a couple of months, make some money with our other companies, and come back in full force," he said.

Nazareth concertgoers with a ticket stub can go to Bridge Interiors, 125 Slater Road, Cranbrook for a refund.

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