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Coronavirus forces Yes to cancel Clearwater concert, back out of rock cruise

The prog-rockers canceled shows 'with an abundance of consideration and caution.’
Yes has canceled its performance at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on March 22. [Gottlieb Bros.]

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Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Yes have canceled a handful of U.S. concerts, including a March 22 date at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, due to concerns over COVID-19, or coronavirus.

The band has also canceled its appearance on the 2020 Cruise to the Edge, slated to depart Miami on March 27.

“Much to our disappointment but with an abundance of consideration and caution, Yes has canceled its performances in the Southeast this spring and withdrawn from the shows on ‘Cruise to the Edge’ for reasons beyond our control,” drummer Alan White said in a statement. “It is unfortunate timing for everyone. We sincerely hope that all involved will realize the last thing the band ever wants to do is to let down their audiences. We believe it is a prudent decision based on many variables and external factors.”

Added guitarist Steve Howe: “Running a relatively large show aided by our 12-piece crew and full production requires insurance coverage, which is currently unavailable to us for a variety of reasons beyond our control. ... It’s become impossible to predict what will happen in the near future, but we look forward to seeing you all very soon.”

The Ruth Eckerd Hall show was also scheduled to feature the Alan Parsons Project. And it turns out Parsons is sticking with the Clearwater date. Joining him on March 22 will be Robby Steinhardt, performing the music of Kansas. Click here for info. (UPDATE: This show has now been postponed as well. Click here for details.)

Ruth Eckerd Hall spokeswoman Katie Pedretty said that refunds will be available for ticketholders to the Yes concert. However, if they keep those tickets and bring them to the Parsons show, they can redeem them for one free ticket, while supplies last, to a handful of other upcoming concerts, including Brit Floyd, Bret Michaels, the Allman Betts Band, the Happy Together Tour and more.

Fans can also put their refunds toward another Yes-centric show announced on Wednesday: former Yes singer Jon Anderson on July 3 at the Nancy and David Bilheimer Capitol Theatre. Those tickets will go on sale to the public soon.

In the past few days, multiple artists have canceled or postponed Tampa Bay concerts for various reasons, including health or coronavirus concerns. Among them: Itzhak Perlman, Art Garfunkel, David Foster, John Mayall and Mike Campbell’s Dirty Knobs.

Concerts by Graham Nash (March 19) and Steve Hackett (March 22) at the Bilheimer Capitol Theatre are both still on for now, according to spokesmen for both artists.

For more on canceled and postponed shows at Ruth Eckerd Hall and the Bilheimer Capitol Theatre, click here or call (727) 791-7400.

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