Lorde has formally canceled her upcoming June concert in Tel Aviv following criticism from fans and activists.
“We regret to announce the cancellation of the Lorde concert in Israel planned for June,” the show’s organizers told Israeli media outlet YNET (via New Zealand Media and Entertainment). “The tickets already bought will be reimbursed within 14 business days. As to the circumstances that led to the cancellation of the show, Lorde is expected to publish a statement via Twitter soon.”
As reported by The Jerusalem Post reporter Amy Spiro, Lorde released the following statement:
“hey guys, so about this israel show — i’ve received an overwhelming number of messages & letters and have had a lot of discussions with people holding many views, and i think the right decision at this time is to cancel the show. i pride myself on being an informed young citizen, and i had done a lot of reading and sought a lot of opinions before deciding to book a show in tel aviv, but I’m not too proud to admit i didn’t make the right call on this one. tel aviv, it’s been a dream of mine to visit this beautiful part of the world for many years, and i’m truly sorry to reverse my commitment to come play for you. i hope one day we can all dance. L x”
Spiro also noted Israeli Culture Minister Miri Regev hoped Lorde would reverse her decision. “Lorde, I’m hoping you can be a ‘pure heroine,’ like the title of your first album, be a heroine of pure culture, free from any foreign — and ridiculous — political considerations,” she said.
The Grammy-winning songstress announced her 2018 Melodrama world tour back in June with a list of shows posted online. One such stop was scheduled for the Tel Aviv Convention Centre on June 5, 2018 at 7 p.m. Activists Nadia Abu-Shanab (Palestinian) and Justine Sachs (Jewish) wrote a joint letter to Lorde that called for her to cancel her Israel concert stop in protest of the country’s treatment of Palestinians.
“Today, millions of people stand opposed to the Israeli government’s policies of oppression, ethnic cleansing, human rights violations, occupation, and apartheid,” the letter read. “As part of this struggle, we believe that an economic, intellectual and artistic boycott is an effective way of speaking out against these crimes.”
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Abu-Shanab and Sachs also argued that “playing in Tel Aviv will be seen as giving support to the policies of the Israeli government, even if you make no comment on the political situation. Such an effect cannot be undone by even the best intention and the best music.”
Lorde responded to the letter over social media on Wednesday. “Noted! Been speaking [with] many people about this and considering all options,” the “Royals” singer tweeted. “Thank u for educating me i am learning all the time too.”
The North American Melodrama tour stops kick off on March 1, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.