Malaysian music festival canceled after Matt Healy onstage kiss

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The Good Vibes Festival 2023 in Malaysia has canceled their remaining schedule following what it’s calling the “controversial conduct” of Matt Healy kissing a male bandmate onstage in protest against the country’s anti-LGBTQ+ policies.

Future Sound Asia (FSA), the company behind the music festival, announced that it was following a directive issued by the Malaysian government’s Ministry of Communications and Digital to immediately cancel the event.

In their statement issued Saturday and shared with the Daily News, FSA identified Matt Healy and his band, “The 1975,” as the cause for the cancellation.

“Prior to the festival, the 1975 management team reassured us that Healy and the band would adhere to local performance guidelines. Regrettably, Healy did not honour these assurances,” FSA said.

“Healy’s actions took us by complete surprise, and we halted the show as promptly as feasible following the incident. Healy’s unprofessional behaviour and overt defiance of Malaysian laws and regulations are disturbing,” they added.

The “disturbing” behavior FSA is referring to was the moment Healy kissed bass player Ross MacDonald onstage after delivering a monologue about his disappointment in the country’s discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community.

FSA went on to highlight the “catastrophic financial blow” they expect to suffer because of the cancellation.

“FSA is now left to address the repercussions of actions taken by an individual not present to be held accountable and face the implications of his actions — impacting fans, industry players, and the nation,” they said in their statement.

Homosexuality is strongly discouraged in the southeast Asian country, where sodomy can even carry criminal penalties.

Malaysia’s tourism minister claimed in 2019 that there are no gay residents in the country, despite having a population of roughly 34 million people. That claim was disputed when researchers at Ipsos found about 12% of Malaysians describe themselves as “only, mostly or equally attracted to (the) same sex.”

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Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

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