American singer and songwriter Lana Del Rey on Friday announced she would be postponing a planned concert in Israel, following calls on her not to perform in the Jewish state.
Del Rey had been scheduled to perform in Israel as part of the Meteor Festival which will take place at Kibbutz Lehavot Habashan, outside of Tiberias in the upper Galilee, from September 6 through 8.
On Friday, however, she announced, “It’s important to me to perform in both Palestine and Israel and treat all my fans equally. Unfortunately it hasn’t been possible to line up both visits with such short notice and therefore I’m postponing my appearance at the Meteor Festival until a time when I can schedule visits for both my Israeli and Palestinian fans, as well as hopefully other countries in the region."
The announcement comes after Del Rey had previously assured fans she would not be cancelling her planned appearance.
“I would like to remind you that performing in Tel Aviv is not a political statement or a commitment to the politics there just as singing here in California doesn’t mean my views are in alignment with my current government’s opinions or sometimes inhuman actions,” she said earlier this month.
Following that announcement, former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters, an active supporter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement who pressures artists not to perform in Israel, responded to Del Rey on Facebook.
Waters decried Israel as an “apartheid state”, and said a visit to Israel is inherently "a political act".
Hours later, Del Rey responded to Waters via Instagram, reiterating that she would not cancel her show, while adding that she “understand[s] the concern” regarding Palestinian Authority residents.
The singer vowed to visit the Palestinian Authority, and meet with both Israeli and Arab children.
Earlier this year, pop star Lorde cancelled her concert in Israel after pro-Palestinian Arab fans in her native New Zealand criticized her.
Lorde later justified her decision, claiming it was the right one and adding, “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.”
On the flip side, many artists have ignored the boycott calls and have gone ahead with their Israel shows as scheduled. These include Australian rocker Nick Cave, who resisted boycott calls and went ahead with his Israel show and even criticized the BDS movement.
In addition to Cave, Radiohead played in Tel Aviv this past July, defying boycott calls. Popular rhythm and blues artist Alicia Keys and pop duo Pet Shop Boys are among the artists who have also performed in Israel in recent years, amid calls to cancel their show.
More recently, Colombian born pop star Shakira went ahead with her Israel show and brushed off warnings that performing in Israel could make her the target of anti-Israel BDS activists.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)