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British jazz star Jamie Cullum is under fire from animal rights activists who are outraged by his performance at the Circus Krone in Germany, which presents live animals for entertainment to jeering crowds. The pianist performed to a sold-out crowd of 3,000 fans.
Circus Krone quarters 200 live animals including lions, zebras, elephants, zebras, sea lions, and a rhino, according to The Independent.
Peter Hoffken of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals slammed Cullum. "We would wish that the celebrities or agents would inform themselves before they book this venue. We hope that at some point Circus Krone will stop exhibiting animals and just concentrate on renting out its premises for singers," he said, reports Star Pulse.
Jan Creamer, the chief executive of Animal Defenders International also commented on the incident. "The welfare needs of tigers, lions and other wild animals can never be met in circuses where these majestic animals are confined," Creamer said. "We are very concerned that celebrities including Jamie Cullum are apparently condoning such cruelty by performing at animal circus venues."
Cullum's representative shielded the artist in a statement. "He was not aware that the venue was used for live animal performances during the summer months," his rep said. "I can confirm that no animals featured in his performance and that he does not condone the use of live animals as a form of entertainment."
Live animal performances in circuses will be banned in Britain stating in 2015. Standard circus industry tools include bullhooks, whips, clubs, and electric prods. Essentially 96 percent of a circus animal's life is spent in chains or cages.
Image: Wikimedia Commons