Opening act for Hedley cancelled at Monday's Quebec City concert
Jacob Hoggard of the band Hedley performs during WE Day Toronto celebrations on Thursday Sept. 28, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
David Friend, The Canadian Press
Published Monday, February 26, 2018 8:08PM EST
TORONTO - Hedley's opening act for Monday night's concert in Quebec City was cancelled after rape allegations against the embattled band's lead singer Jacob Hoggard recently emerged.
Videotron Centre, the venue hosting the show, announced on its Facebook page that rock band Liteyears was no longer slated to begin the concert.
“Thank you for your understanding,” the venue said without further explanation.
It's unclear whether Liteyears backed out of the show themselves and the band did not immediately respond for comment.
The move follows a CBC story on Sunday that recounted a 24-year-old woman's allegations that Hoggard sexually assaulted her in a hotel two years ago.
A lawyer for Hoggard has denied any wrongdoing by the musician.
Allegations of sexual misconduct first appeared earlier this month on social media in posts made by anonymous users.
It led the band to withdraw from consideration for three Juno Awards categories and back out of performing on the telecast.
The band's members have called the allegations involving young fans “unsubstantiated,” but acknowledged that in the past they “engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock 'n' roll cliches.”
While Hedley pushed ahead with its current tour, the band's original opening acts Shawn Hook and Neon Dreams ditched their spots, and several radio stations yanked the band from their playlists.
Toronto's Liteyears joined as a replacement opener about a week ago. The band's lead singer Brent Wirth told a crowd in Halifax's Scotiabank Centre on Friday that it considered their spot on the tour as a rescue from near dissolution of their music career aspirations.
“We weren't a band, as of a couple days ago,” Wirth said. “About a month back, we went through one of the toughest times we have.
“We kind of lost sight of the dream. This, of course, is the dream,” he added.