Country music singer Elle King is facing a wave of criticism from outraged fans after her recent performance at the Grand Ole Opry during a special Dolly Parton tribute concert to celebrate the iconic country legend’s 78th birthday.
Elle King’s controversial performance, organized by the Grand Ole Opry on January 19, has stirred up a storm on social media. Video footage circulating online captured the singer openly admitting to being “hammered” before launching into what fans are labeling as a “disrespectful” rendition of Dolly Parton’s song “Marry Me.”
The footage reveals King appearing to slur her words, while using explicit language multiple times during the performance, admitting at one point that she was in fact intoxicated.
“Hi, my name is Elle King, I’m f***ing hammered.”
King also confronted the audience, saying “I’m not even gonna f***ing lie… y’all bought tickets for this s***? You ain’t getting your money back.”
The incident has prompted a large amount of backlash on social media, with fans expressing their disappointment and frustration over what they deem as an inappropriate tribute to the Queen of Country.
I just mentally canceled Elle King. Like GURL, you cannot show up to an Opry/Ryman event absolutely hammered and then go on stage at THE Mother Church and use the profanity you did. Then to top it off, she can’t even perform a Dolly song correctly…GIRL BYE
— 𝙷𝚘𝚕𝚍𝚎𝚗 (𝚃𝚊𝚢𝚕𝚘𝚛’𝚜 𝚅𝚎𝚛𝚜𝚒𝚘𝚗) (@hoodenfignewton) January 21, 2024
The @opry is one of the few pure things left in this world. Elle King did one of the most disrespectful things you can do to that stage.
— Christopher Harkey (@ccharkey17) January 21, 2024
I’d be surprised to see Elle King back on the @opry stage. I think she lost that privilege on Friday night for good.
— Kyle G (@KyleG_WI) January 22, 2024
elle king. how disrespectful. not only to dolly, but to every single person who has walked on that stage. i seriously cannot even believe it.
— michaela ⚡️ (@michaelafaitht) January 21, 2024
While Dolly Parton was not present at the show and has yet to comment on the situation, her sister Stella has taken to social media to address the controversy.
I didn’t see nor hear the Grand Ole Opry birthday tribute to my big sister Dolly over the weekend. But some lil girl by the name of Elle King apparently cussed and insulted some of Dolly’s fans by not knowing a song. She did admit to being “ hammered” her word not mine.
— Stella Parton (@StellaParton) January 22, 2024
A statement has been released by the Grand Ole Opry, apologizing for the language that was used during Elle King’s performance.
Hi Judas, we deeply regret and apologize for the language that was used during last night’s second Opry performance.
— Grand Ole Opry (@opry) January 20, 2024
Elle King’s troubling performance at the Opry is not the first time she has appeared intoxicated on stage. Fans raised concern about King during her gig of co-hosting the New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash. During her performance of her song “Drunk (And I Don’t Want to Go Home),” King’s on-stage behavior and noticeable slurring of words caught the attention of viewers.
As of now, Elle King has not provided any comments on the event at the Opry.