Tag Archives: Cancel

Biden indicates plans to cancel Keystone XL pipeline permit on 1st day in office, sources confirm

U.S. president-elect Joe Biden has indicated plans to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline permit via executive action on his first day in office, sources confirmed to CBC News on Sunday.

A purported briefing note from the Biden transition team mentioning the plan was widely circulated over the weekend after being shared by the incoming president’s team with U.S. stakeholders.

The words “Rescind Keystone XL pipeline permit” appear on a list of executive actions supposedly scheduled for Day 1 of Biden’s presidency. 

The list shown to stakeholders is a lengthier version of a list already reported in the media based on a memo released publicly over the weekend by Biden’s chief of staff Ronald Klain. That publicly reported memo from Klain did not mention Keystone XL, but cautioned that the memo was not a complete list of planned actions.

The Biden team has announced plans to sign dozens of executive orders in the incoming president’s first few days in office.

Climate actions planned for first day

They include a raft of environmental policies to be enacted on the first day of his presidency, including re-joining the Paris climate accord. The note shown to stakeholders has led some to expect that the first-day climate actions will include the move to cancel the project to carry Canadian bitumen. 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in his first conversation with Biden as president-elect in November, indicated that he wanted to speak further about some potential irritants — including Keystone XL and Biden’s proposed Buy American policies. 

WATCH | Cancelling Keystone XL permit to be among Biden’s first actions: sources:

Joe Biden’s plans for his first 100 days in office are coming out, and sources confirmed to CBC News that Biden has indicated plans to cancel the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline on Day 1 — along with dismantling several pieces of Trump’s legacy. 2:09

Biden foreshadowed such a cancellation months ago, announcing in a U.S. TV interview and through statements from his campaign team that he intended to cancel the $ 8-billion, cross-border pipeline.

However, proponents of the project have been hoping that he might reconsider once in office. 

Federal Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole called on Trudeau to reach out to the incoming U.S. administration to ensure Keystone moves forward. “Keystone XL is a project of national significance that supports countless workers on both sides of the border,” he said in an emailed statement. 

However, Green Party Leader Annamie Paul welcomed the news, calling Biden’s potential actions a “contrast in leadership” to new offshore drilling projects greenlit by Canada’s environment minister earlier this week.

Former TC Energy executive Dennis McConaghy is not surprised the project is among the first decisions by the new administration.

“I have consistently said Biden would indulge in this rescinding of the permit immediately because it’s something he has to do largely to follow through for expectations of his political base and many of his donors,” McConaghy told CBC’s Kyle Bakx on Sunday.

The decision would likely lead to disappointment in the Canadian oilpatch, even after so many other setbacks for the project over the last decade.

“Ideally the project should have been completed and put into operation during the Trump administration,” McConaghy said. “It’s a very audacious thing that is being done here by the Biden administration.”

Ambassador says Canada continues to support project

Kirsten Hillman, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., said in a statement sent to The Canadian Press that the pipeline expansion fits with Canada’s climate plan.

“The Government of Canada continues to support the Keystone XL project and the benefits that it will bring to both Canada and the United States,” she said.

“Not only has the project itself changed significantly since it was first proposed, but Canada’s oilsands production has also changed significantly. Per-barrel oilsands GHG emissions have dropped 31 per cent since 2000, and innovation will continue to drive progress.”

Keith Stewart, senior energy strategist with Greenpeace Canada, suggested Canada’s continued support of the pipeline was akin to “beating [a] dead horse.”

“The Biden administration offers us a fresh start on addressing the climate crisis with a willing partner, so let’s not blow it by pushing pipelines,” Stewart said 

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders called the pipeline expansion a disaster in a tweet.

“With all of the major crises facing America, we must never lose sight of the most existential threat facing our planet: climate change,” he wrote.

TC Energy said in a release late Sunday that the company plans to spend $ 1.7 billion US on a solar, wind and battery-powered operating system for the pipeline, hire a union-only workforce, sign Indigenous equity partners and establish zero-emissions operations by 2030, all with an eye toward securing Biden’s approval.

Canadian leg of pipeline under construction for months

The Alberta government agreed last year to invest about $ 1.5 billion as equity in the project, plus billions more in loan guarantees. As a result, the Canadian leg of the project has been under construction for several months with around 1,000 workers in southeast Alberta. 

If completed, the 1,897-kilometre pipeline, first announced in 2005, would carry 830,000 barrels of crude a day from the oilsands in Hardisty, Alta., to Nebraska. It would then connect with the original Keystone that runs to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has said previously he thinks Alberta could have legal options to recoup taxpayer money should the permit be cancelled.

On Sunday, Kenney said in a statement posted to social media that he’s deeply concerned that Biden may repeal the pipeline’s presidential permit.

“Doing so would kill jobs on both sides of the border, weaken the critically important Canada-U.S. relationship and undermine U.S. national security by making the United States more dependent on OPEC oil imports in the future,” Kenney said. 

Kenney said should the U.S. repeal the permit, “Alberta will work with TC Energy to use all legal avenues available to protect its interest in the project.”

WATCH | Would Biden cancel Keystone XL?

Cancelling the presidential permit on the Keystone XL pipeline is a policy change U.S. president-elect Joe Biden has vowed to make. James Rajotte, Alberta’s senior representative to the U.S., hopes that the project continues to move forward, as it’s currently underway and would help deliver Alberta crude to U.S. refineries. 7:28

In 2016, TC Energy launched a lawsuit and a multi-billion dollar North American Free Trade Agreement claim against the U.S. government. The company changed course after the election of President Donald Trump.

TC Energy could now take similar action in order to prevent walking away from Keystone XL empty-handed after a dozen years of setbacks, billions of dollars spent and thousands of pages of filings.

“There are plausible legal claims. I think you have to say all of those are less than 50 per cent shots to get your money back. Whether it is the end of the road depends on whether the investors want to stick by it,” said James Coleman, an associate professor of energy law at Southern Methodist University in Texas, told CBC. 

TC Energy has yet to respond to a request for comment from CBC News.

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CBC | World News

No need to cancel Halloween, says Dr. Tam — as long as everyone follows the rules

Canada’s top public doctor says there’s no need to cancel Halloween this year — as long as trick-or-treaters respect the new realities of the pandemic.

“I think finding that balance of trying to provide some degree of normality, even though it is actually different from any other year, most public health leaders think that that is actually important,” Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam told a briefing in Ottawa this morning.

Tam advised parents and kids to maintain physical distancing while trick-or-treating outside, to stick to pre-packaged treats and to have hand sanitizer readily available.

She also said that a creative use of “different fabrics” can turn a day-to-day face mask into part of a costume.

“There’s some really interesting ideas where people are handing out treats at the end of a hockey stick or something, using a pool noodle to tell your kids how far they should be standing apart from each other,” she said. “So there are ways to actually manage this outdoors.”

Tam stressed that parents and children should follow guidelines set by local health authorities, as some local COVID-19 caseloads are far larger than others.

For example, in Ottawa — which moved to red on its COVID alert scale after a recent surge in cases —  the local public health agency has put forward a series of suggestions that include holding virtual costume parties and limiting trick-or-treating to the people in a household.

WATCH: Dr. Theresa Tam’s tips for a pandemic Halloween

Chief Public Health Officer Dr Theresa Tam offered guidance today to parents on how to have a safe Halloween. 1:30

Both Tam and her colleague, Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Howard Njoo, said more tips will be posted to the Public Health Agency of Canada’s website soon.

Dr. Jennifer Russell, New Brunswick’s chief medical officer, told reporters at her daily news conference today that no door-to-door trick-or-treating will be permitted in regions of the province currently in the orange phase of recovery.

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CBC | Health News

Writers, academics sign open letter criticizing ‘ideological conformity,’ cancel culture

Dozens of artists, writers and academics have signed an open letter decrying the weakening of public debate and warning that the free exchange of information and ideas is in jeopardy amid a rise in what they call “illiberalism.”

J.K. Rowling, Salman Rushdie and Margaret Atwood are among dozens of writers, artists and academics to argue against ideological conformity in an open letter in Harper’s Magazine.

The names hail from a host of different sectors, from cognitive scientist Noam Chomsky to activist Gloria Steinem, jazz great Wynton Marsalis to chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov to Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers.

Academics on the list of more than 150 signatories hail from American universities such as Princeton, Yale, Harvard Law, Brown, Rutgers and more.

In addition to Atwood, other Canadian signatories include political pundit David Frum, longtime New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell, former federal Liberal Party leader Michael Ignatieff and literary critic and writer Jeet Heer.

The letter comes amid a debate over so-called cancel culture — where prominent people face attack for sharing controversial opinions.

“The forces of illiberalism are gaining strength throughout the world and have a powerful ally in Donald Trump, who represents a real threat to democracy,” the letter said.

“But resistance must not be allowed to harden into its own brand of dogma or coercion—which right-wing demagogues are already exploiting. The democratic inclusion we want can be achieved only if we speak out against the intolerant climate that has set in on all sides.”

Rowling, for example, has attracted criticism over her views on transgender issues, which have angered many activists. In a series of tweets, Rowling said she supported transgender rights but did not believe in “erasing” the concept of biological sex.

The comments prompted Daniel Radcliffe and other cast members of the Potter films to publicly disagree with her. Rowling was unmoved, but has been trading barbs with critics online.

The letter criticized the state of public debate and the “swift and severe retribution” dealt out to any perceived wrongs. It decried an “intolerance of opposing views, a vogue for public shaming and ostracism, and the tendency to dissolve complex policy issues in a blinding moral certainty.”

“The way to defeat bad ideas is by exposure, argument, and persuasion, not by trying to silence or wish them away,” the letter said. “We refuse any false choice between justice and freedom, which cannot exist without each other.

Heated debate online

The letter garnered pushback and has sparked heated debate since being posted Tuesday by Harper’s and circulated by a number of the signatories on social media.

Critics have pointed out that some of those who signed have engaged in the same toxic behaviour they decry in the letter. Others cited the disconnect over signatories holding such prominence, positions of power and with large public platforms complaining about having their speech stifled. 

Historian Kerri Greenidge, who was listed among the original signatories, said she did not endorse the letter and asked for a retraction. A writer on the list, Jennifer Finney Boylan, apologized for her participation, saying she thought she was “endorsing a well meaning, if vague, message against internet shaming” and was not aware of the full list of signatories.

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CBC | World News

Council's Olympic committee will be asked to cancel Calgary 2026 bid and plebiscite

A recommendation will be brought forward to Calgary city council's Olympic assessment committee Tuesday to cancel the bid process for the 2026 Winter Olympics as well as the Nov. 13 plebiscite, CBC News has confirmed.

The city and federal government were unable to reach a successful conclusion to funding talks on Monday.

Coun. Joe Magliocca said if the negotiations are ongoing, "it doesn't really matter because tomorrow, it's going to be the end of the Olympic bid."

Magliocca said the committee meeting has been moved from Tuesday afternoon to 9:30 a.m.

"Unless something changes dramatically in the next hour or so, I have a hard time seeing how we continue with this bid past tomorrow's Olympic committee meeting," said Coun. Evan Woolley, who is chair of the committee.

The mayor's office declined to comment on the recommendation to cancel the bid process.

If the assessment committee does decide to end the bid, it would be sent to council for a final vote on Wednesday, several members of city council confirmed.

Ottawa says no additional money on table

Canada's minister of sport reiterated early Monday the federal government is continuing to negotiate with the city and province over an Olympic funding formula, but no additional money will be offered despite the city and province's concerns.

Kirsty Duncan appeared on the Calgary Eyeopener, where she said the federal government has made clear "since March 2018" that it will fund up to 50 per cent of the public contribution toward the 2026 Olympic Games if Calgary is chosen as the host city.

"That is the policy on our website, and we've done that. We've come forward with a commitment of $ 1.75 billion," she said, referencing a Friday announcement.

Coun. Diane Colley-Urquhart, one of the members of the Olympic assessment committee, tweeted about Duncan's comments, saying "and now we pull the pin," seemingly referring to ending the bid process.

And Coun. Jeromy Farkas said in an emailed statement he will be urging the assessment committee to cancel the Nov. 13 plebiscite and end the bid process even if a recommendation is not brought forward.

"Over the last few days, information has emerged confirming that there is no viable funding agreement for the 2026 Olympic Games bid," said Farkas.

"Calgarians were promised budget and funding details a full month before the plebiscite, and it's become clear that they will never get the complete details required for a fair and informed vote."

Calgary's Olympic BidCo estimates a 2026 Winter Games would cost $ 5.23 billion, with $ 3 billion of that coming from the public purse.

The $ 1.75 billion commitment from the feds is in 2026 dollars, which equates to $ 1.5 billion in 2018 dollars, or half the needed amount.

Federal Minister of Sport Kirsty Duncan told the Calgary Eyeopener that the federal government will fund only up to 50 per cent of the public money needed to host the Olympics if Calgary is chosen. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC)

"We have been clear since the beginning we would fund up to 50 per cent, we would not go above the 50 per cent and we have never wavered from that position," said Duncan.

Duncan also pointed out the federal contribution would match the provincial and municipal amounts.

The province has previously said it would contribute $ 700 million, while the city hasn't unveiled its funding plan yet. Based on the other two orders of government, Calgary would have to contribute $ 800 million to get the maximum federal contribution.

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci expressed outrage over the weekend at the federal announcement, with Ceci calling it "bad faith" and saying he understood there wouldn't be a matching condition attached.

Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci says the province has no more money to offer a Calgary Olympic bid and again called on the federal government to drop its matching condition. (CBC)

Nenshi also penned a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday, saying he would ask city council to scrap the bid — ahead of a Nov. 13 plebiscite — if an agreement couldn't be reached by Monday.

The city's Olympic assessment committee is scheduled to meet Tuesday and council is set to meet for a strategy session on Wednesday.

Ottawa vague on negotiation details

Pressed repeatedly by Eyeopener host David Gray on what the three sides are negotiating if none are willing to change their position, Duncan was non-committal in her answers.

We ask Minister Kirsty Duncan to clarify the government's announcement on Olympic funding. 7:20

"It's been a busy weekend and people are working hard. I'm proud to work with our partners, the City of Calgary and the Province of Alberta, and we keep doing the work," she said.

"I'm well aware of the timelines for the plebiscite. We support that Calgarians should make their voice heard, and should Calgarians decide to go forward with a bid, we will be right there beside them and we're still working at it, we're still at the table."

Robert Livingstone, who runs GamesBids.com — a website that tracks Olympic bids — said he wasn't at all surprised by the federal position.

"Honestly, I would have been surprised to hear that the dollar matching concept would have been dropped, so there's miscommunication at some level somewhere, and I'm not sure where that would have come from," he said.

"It is a policy the federal government has used to fund sports events for years now. So I don't see why it would have been different for Calgary and why they would have made a different plan, unless there was some agreement made back in March."

Feds need to deliver original promise: Ceci

Speaking in Edmonton on Monday, Ceci said negotiations continue but the province has no more money to offer and called on the federal government to remove the matching condition. 

"Seven hundred million dollars is all we can do," he said. 

"That being said, there is a path forward for this bid and it relies heavily on the federal government coming to the table with what they originally promised the province and the City of Calgary during negotiations. If the feds can commit $ 1.75 billion in 2018 dollars to this project and drop this 50/50 funding rule, then we have what we need and the bid can go ahead to plebiscite."

Despite Duncan's assertions, Ceci said the 50/50 rule was not discussed during the negotiations.

"This was learned through the news last week. This was a surprise to us," said Ceci. 

Report shows cost overruns, revenue surpluses

Calgary's BidCo also issued results Monday of a study looking at Olympic cost overruns and revenue surpluses between 2000 and 2018

The study was done by two professors and a PhD student at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz in Germany and the Pantheon-Sorbonne University in France.

"The report intentionally excludes major infrastructure not needed to stage the Games," it reads.

"These projects, such as roads, trains and public facilities, often complement the Games, are accelerated to coincide with the Games and may be part of the overall Games legacy. They are not, however, required to stage the Games and as such are not counted as a Games cost."

The report found that with the exception of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio and the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, each event analyzed either broke even or had a surplus.

"This report clearly shows that, historically, Games organizing committees either balance their budgets or realize a surplus through good planning and rigorous financial management," said BidCo chair Scott Hutcheson in a release.

"All Olympic Winter Games in this report balanced their books, and Vancouver 2010, which was modelled on the [1988] Calgary Games, showed that we host Games well in Canada and we'll do so again in 2026."

Tourism Calgary Cindy Ady says a 2026 Olympic Games in Calgary would be a $ 5-billion injection into the local economy. (Kate Adach/CBC)

Should Calgary be chosen, it would be a much-needed economic boost, said Tourism Calgary CEO Cindy Ady.

"This is almost $ 5 billion being injected into the Calgary economy when it's been through a pretty tough recession and is looking forward as to how it redefines itself and where it's going to go in the future," she said.

"Relative to just tourism, though, one out of every 10 Calgarians make their living in tourism. So if we were to go back to previous Games, whether it be Vancouver or Salt Lake or others, for sure the main beneficiary is the tourism industry. Vancouver had a double-digit increase post-Games, and every year since they've had double-digit increases … it's the billion-dollar brand push that you won't get in any other way."

Coun. Jeff Davison said in a tweet that whether or not the bid proceeds, he and the assessment committee still intend to pursue a new event centre for the city. 

Nonexistent communication on process: councillor

Magliocca said he's glad the bid will likely end on Tuesday, adding that he only wishes it had happened sooner.

"I'm just heartbroken we had to spend all this extra money for no reason … we could have done it a long time ago," he said.

The councillor said communications on funding negotiations and the bid process have been almost nonexistent.

"None of us have been kept in the loop," he said. "None of us knew what was going on. I don't know where they're getting these numbers, I don't know where Mary [Moran] gets her numbers, saying that we knew the provincial government was only giving us $ 700 million. 

"Why didn't we know this? We should have been more transparent … I just don't know who dropped the ball here."

With files from Scott Dippel, Michelle Bellefontaine, Kate Adach, the Calgary Eyeopener.

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CBC | Sports News

Bono Forced to Cancel U2 Show After Losing His Voice Mid-Concert

U2 was forced to cancel their concert after Bono had difficulties singing.

A concertgoer tells ET that during the rock band’s performance of “Red Flag Day” at their Berlin concert on Saturday, the 58-year-old frontman lost his voice. The eyewitness said that U2 then tried to play “Beautiful Day,” but left the stage saying they’d be back in 15 minutes.

The eyewitness added that management came out and was asking for patience from the audience before announcing that they had to cancel the show. The band’s team also added that they would later announce how they will handle the situation, possibly rescheduling the show for another date.

A video shared on Twitter by another attendee shows Bono pausing the show and explaining that “something’s happened” and that they “cannot go on.”

“So sorry, thank you,” Bono says in the video before clearing his throat. “Before we left the dressing room, I was ready to sing for you. Something’s happened and I think we cannot go on. It’s not right for you… I’m sure this is not a big, big problem, but I’m going to have to do something. So… if people want to go home, that’s fine. We’ll play another show for you some other time. If you want to stay, we’re gonna have to break for, I don’t know, 10, 15 minutes. I’ll go find out what’s happening.” 

This isn’t the first time that U2 canceled a show mid-concert — a similar situation happened nearly 20 years ago. In 1989, when the band was in Amsterdam, Bono also struggled with voice problems.

The band has yet to comment on the incident on their social media pages. They are set to play a show in Cologne, Germany, on Tuesday. No word if that concert is still on.

ET has reached out to Bono and U2’s reps for comment.

Reporting by Joseph Corral. 


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Backstreet Boys Cancel Concert After Several Fans Are Injured In Structure Collapse

The Backstreets Boys cancelled their concert at WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma after high wind and rain caused damage to the group’s stage and equipment.

News of the cancellation arrived from Kevin Richardson, a member of the group, who tweet, “Update… unfortunately, due to damage sustained in the storm earlier this evening, we are unable to perform the show tonight. Safety is always #1. Keep your tickets because, Backstreet WILL BE BACK!”

Additionally, a temporary structure was knocked down, injuring a number of fans prior to the show. Since, video has surfaced of fans helping other fans recover from the incident outside the venue. Emergency personnel were immediately called to the scene.

“At 5:00 p.m., WinStar World Casino and Resort officials began evacuation of the outdoor concert venue after observing that lightning was within four miles of the casino,” Kym Koch Thompson, spokeswoman for the resort, said in a statement. “All patrons in the area were asked to move and to seek shelter from the storm. However, about 150 patrons who were standing in line for the Backstreet Boys concert did not heed staff’s warnings.

“At approximately 5:30 p.m., the storm hit and knocked over the concert entrance trusses with 70-80 mile an hour winds and heavy rain. 14 people were treated at the scene and then transported to local hospitals. Two have already been released. Love County emergency responders, Lighthorse Police and Oklahoma Highway Patrol are on scene.

“We know that fans often suffer through inclement weather for their favorite acts, but this was an unusual event and our thoughts are with those who were injured during this storm.”

Get more Backstreet Boys news in the clip below.

Reporting by Steven Wilks.


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EXCLUSIVE: Fifth Harmony Dishes on 'Most Genuine' Album Yet, Support Justin Bieber's Decision to Cancel Tour

Playing EXCLUSIVE: Fifth Harmony Dishes on ‘Most Genuine’ Album Yet, Support Justin Bieber’s Decision to Cancel Tour

Fifth Harmony are the happiest they’ve ever been!

The quartet stepped out for a night of fun at the Igo.live social media launch party at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles, California, on Wednesday night, and ET caught up with them.

RELATED: Fifth Harmony Announces New Album Title and Release Date — Find Out When It Arrives!

“We are doing so incredible,” Ally Brooke told ET’s Lauren Zima. “We are the happiest we’ve ever been and so many exciting things are happening for us right now. So we’re just doing incredible.”

Earlier this week, FH announced that their third studio album — and first without Camila Cabello — will be released on Aug. 25. So what can fans expect to hear on their self-titled LP?

“I think maybe, the most genuine sound we’ve ever had,” Lauren Jauregui dished. “Like, authentic.”

Dinah Jane added that the source material for the upcoming album was “love, things that we go through.”

“It just shows the growth that we’ve had. It just talks about experience,” Normani Kordei shared.

RELATED: Fifth Harmony Explains Why They Won’t Change Their Name Following Camila Cabello Departure

The singers know how grueling gearing up for a new album and its accompanying tour can be. So when ET asked what they thought about Justin Bieber canceling the remainder of his tour, they were nothing but supportive.

“We support him and support happiness,” Kordei replied. “We know what it feels like, especially being on the road, and we’re super family-oriented. Like, for me, I get homesick a lot. He was on tour for about 18 months, so that’s a long time… He needed it.”

“No one cancels a tour unless it’s damaging for them to continue,” Jauregui added, “so he probably had a very good reason.”

RELATED: Kelly Rowland Gave Fifth Harmony Advice on ‘Sticking Together’ and ‘Being Strong’

FH also gushed about how they’re the closest they’ve ever been.

“We’re so close and we love each other so much,” Brooke shared. “We have ups and downs, but we get through it together and right now, like I said, we’re experiencing this [new moment]. We’re at such a high right now. It’s such a momentous time for us.”

“It’s been the biggest from the top of the year up until now,” Kordei added. “We’ve done so much. We started out doing People’s Choice [Awards] and we won awards. And just from then, it’s just been blessing after blessing.”

Jane also shared that, for them, the most exciting part about getting back into music “is we’ve been able to go write with the producers and the writers” and “it’s just so important that we get involved.”

“I think that’s the part we fought for this time around and it’s just super special to us,” she explained. “We used to, like, rehearse for, like, on one song for, like, 24 hours, now we can do, like, 10 songs in 24 hours.”

For more on the quartet, watch below.


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ET – Latest Stories – Music