Music festival canceled over same-sex kiss onstage – DW – 07/22/2023

todayJuly 22, 2023 4

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Malaysia halted The Good Vibes music festival on Saturday, after two UK band members of the same sex kissed on stage.

The festival is a three-day event hosted in Kuala Lumpur where major international bands were to perform.

The abrupt cancelation of the festival came after frontman of British pop rock band ‘The 1975’ publicly criticized the country’s anti-LGBT position and kissed his male bandmate onstage.

Malaysia, a muslim-majority country, considers homosexuality a crime which is punishable by imprisonment.

The 1975 have now been banned from performing in the country, said a government committee that oversees performances by foreigners.

Healy’s onstage protest

While on stage on Friday, Matty Healy told the audience that the band had considered pulling out of the show but did not want to disappoint Malaysian fans.

“I do not see the point of inviting The 1975 to a country and then telling us who we can have sex with,” he said.

After his speech Healy was seen kissing the band’s bassist Ross MacDonald.

Later, the band abruptly cut short their performance and Healy said “All right, we gotta go. We just got banned from Kuala Lumpur.”

This is not the first on-stage protest by Healy. In 2019, during a concert in UAE, which also has tough anti-LGBT laws, Healy kissed a male fan.

The organizers of the Good Vibes music festival said that the band had to be taken off stage due to “non-compliance with local performance guidelines.”

Good Vibes ended

The organizers of the Good Vibes music festival confirmed the cancellation of the three-day event following a meeting with Malaysia’s Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil.

“There will be no compromise against any party that challenges, disparages and violates Malaysian laws,” Fadzil said in a Twitter post.

“Never touch the sensitivities of the community, especially those that are against the manners and values of the local culture,” he said in a subsequent tweet.

In May, Malaysian authorities seized over a hundred watches made by the Swiss company called Swatch. The watches were part of the company’s “Pride collection” which celebrates rights of the LGBT community.

The LGBT community in the country have reportedly faced regular discrimination by Malaysian authorities.

ns/jcg (AFP, Reuters)

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Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

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