The Arctic Winter Games are apologizing for asking local artists to play for free.

In a statement, Thorsten Gohl, Marketing Manager for the Games, clarifies the call for Northern performers was meant to promote a cultural exhibition.

It was not our intention to disrespect the arts community, but rather to fulfill the mandate of the Arctic Winter Games to promote not only athletic competition and social exchange, but also cultural exhibition,” said Grohl. “Our call for performers was meant to make the Games more inclusive of the arts community, and give interested performers a chance to become involved in the Games outside of the sporting component. The Arctic Winter Games rely heavily on community involvement to run smoothly, and we are thankful for everyone who helps out in any capacity.”

The statement continued, saying that financial compensation for selected performing artists at the opening and closing ceremonies will be provided. There will also be an update to their call for performers. That will be issued in the “near future“.

The Arctic Winter Games will be taking place in March in Hay River and Fort Smith.