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Lorde cancels concert amid calls to boycott Israel

Lorde has canceled an upcoming tour date in Tel Aviv amid pressures from a movement calling for a boycott of Israel.

The singer, 21, announced that after poring through an “overwhelming number of messages & letters,” she’s opted to call off the show scheduled for June 5 as part of her “Melodrama” world tour.

“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,” she said in a statement to The Jerusalem Post.

The New Zealand singer added that it had long been a dream of hers to play in the city, and that she hoped in the future “we can all dance.”

Lorde acknowledged the backlash last week when she responded to an open letter written by supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement calling for her to cancel the show as part of the “artistic boycott” of the country.

At the time, she thanked the letter’s authors for educating her on the subject and said she was speaking with “many people” to help inform her decision.

The note, titled “Dear Lorde, here’s why we are urging you to boycott Israel,” appeared on a New Zealand site, and claimed that Lorde giving a performance in Tel Aviv would be the equivalent of her endorsing the policies of the Israeli government.

Israel’s Culture Minister Miri Regev said in a statement to The Jerusalem Post that she hoped Lorde would reconsider 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 wrote.

The BDS movement has faced criticism from other artists in recent months, including Australian singer Nick Cave.

“I love Israel and I love Israeli people and ... [I’m playing here] to make a principled stand against anyone who wants to censor and silence musicians,” Cave said in November. “So really you could say in a way that the BDS made me play Israel.”

– Tribune News Service


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