After coming under continual fire in the four days since she played the New Year’s Eve party at Donald J. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, as the other performers that night have, Terri Nunn of the group Berlin has issued an apology for the controversial gig, saying she didn’t know it would be perceived as taking a political stand, and expressing shock at the lack of COVID protocols at the resort.
“I am truly sorry I performed at Mar-a-Lago and would not have done so if I’d known what I learned while I was there,” Nunn wrote in a social media statement posted under Berlin’s Facebook account. “My goal in performing was not to support a political party. I see now that that’s not the way it appeared and I am apologetic for that as well.”
“The contract stated it was a small Covid-safe event for the members of Mar-a-Lago,” she continued. “Unfortunately it was not Covid-safe anywhere in Florida. I had no idea masks and social distancing were not required. I thought I was current on all Covid news everywhere, but clearly I was not. I was shocked by Florida and Mar-a-Lago’s lack of regard for the pandemic, and if I’d known I would never have gone. Once I fulfilled my contractual obligation, I left the event as quickly as I could. It is a mistake I regret. I took a Covid 19 test yesterday and tested negative.”
Nunn closed her statement by acknowledging that many in the Berlin fan base took her appearance as a betrayal of their values, especially some in the gay community who have become fans as a result of her frequent appearances at Pride festivals.
“My apologies to those in the LGBTQ community who thought my performance was a statement against them,” she wrote. “I have been and always will be fully supportive.”
One of Nunn’s former cohorts in Berlin, cofounder David Diamond, had already issued a statement on Twitter alerting fans that her performance was officially a solo show and he was not involved.
“A number of news outlets have reported that ‘Berlin’ played Mar-a-Lago for NYE,” Diamond tweeted. “I want to make clear that I was not at this show, nor did I ever plan to attend. I spent the evening at my home in Truckee.”
The Mike Love-led Beach Boys, Vanilla Ice and Dayne have also come under similar fire for the last four days, but none have expressed regret over their participation in the maskless event. The president was supposed to preside over the festivities, but opted to return to the White House as his fight to overturn the election intensified; other family members, included Trump’s children, held court in his absence. Photos and videos from the event show attendees posing and reveling as if it were a New Year’s Eve like any other.
A number of news outlets have reported that "Berlin" played Mar-a-Lago for NYE. I want to make clear that I was not at this show, nor did I ever plan to attend. I spent the evening at my home in #Truckee. Happy new year everyone! -David
— David Diamond (@DAMSurvival) January 2, 2021
Nunn had come under attack on Twitter from fans demanding an explanation, and also had become the source of jokes from detractors wondering whether “Take My Breath Away” counted as an ironic choice for an unmasked event amid the pandemic.
Dayne, for her part, had tweeted and then deleted her own statement earlier. Screenshots show that Dayne wrote, “I’m saddened by all this. I have a 30-year career that (includes) many diverse friendships. And I try to stay non political and non judgmental and not preach. I sing from my heart purely and from Source (sic). I wish for all to be who they need to be… and find their way.”
Just, FYI. @taylordayne decided to delete her ludicrous “quote tweet,” but make sure you’re paying attention. And @RealTerriNunn, shame on you, too. #TaylorDayne #TerriNunn #LGBTQ #gay pic.twitter.com/AAHgrWmmpt
— Josh Sabarra (@JoshSabarra) January 2, 2021
Love’s licensed version of the Beach Boys previously played a benefit for Trump in the days leading up to the November election, and has a longstanding association with the president, so any similar apologies are unlikely to come from those quarters. Vanilla Ice’s only substantial tweet since the controversy erupted has been to post, “Evil Knievel broke every bone in his body and still lived till his 90s,” although it wasn’t clear whether this constituted his statement on COVID dangers.