Matisyahu (archive)
Matisyahu (archive)Flash 90

A concert by Jewish singer Matisyahu was canceled due to threats by pro-Palestinian protesters.

A few hours before the concert in the House of Blues in Chicago, Matisyahu abruptly announced that he was canceling the show due to fears of protesters trying to break in and disrupt the performance.

On Thursday, several leaders of the Chicago Palestinian community, along with a number of other organizations, announced that they would work against his performance. The group published a letter calling for the show to be canceled. Among the signatories to the letter was the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression.

"We will not allow for a musician who has performed for the Israeli Occupation Forces, raised money in support of Israel and the AIPAC lobbying group, and who continues to deny ongoing genocide, to perform in our city. In the city with the largest Palestinian population in the country, and during a time when our loved ones are being massacred back home, the House of Blues has the nerve to host someone who gleefully supports Israel. As far as we're concerned, the House of Blues is complicit in the genocide," the protesters stated, according to CBS.

Matisyahu announced the cancellation on Facebook: “Dear Fans, it saddens me to write this to you. Our sold-out show tonight at House of Blues Chicago has been canceled due to the threat of protests. While the true details surrounding this decision remain opaque, and while the responsible parties all point fingers at one another over the decision; I can assure you there have been no threats of violence received by our security team who have been vigilant in knowing what is happening in each city.”

“Since the venue has paid me for the cancellation, I will be donating the proceeds to help the families of the hostages and in honor of International Women's Day to acknowledge the women and girls still held captive by Hamas as well as to United Hatzalah, an emergency medical organization run entirely by volunteers from all backgrounds, Jew and Muslim alike”

“While my fans and I are deeply hurt by this, please know we will not cower to these bullies and the pressure they exert. The ramifications of such tactics go beyond me and the Jewish people. These individuals and the organizations that break under their pressure threaten the bedrock of artistic expression, intellectual honesty, and empathy between people with different views and concerns.”

“We will continue to play shows. And we will always stand tall against hate and march towards the true goal of a long-term peace for all.”