Latest Headlines and Breaking News from Around the World
Fresh news
for 2023

Malaysia cancels music festival after The 1975's Matty Healy kisses male bandmate

Matty Healy, lead singer of The 1975, performs at The Governors Ball Music Festival at Randall's Island Park on June 6, 2014 in New York

British indie rockers The 1975 have fallen foul of Malaysian authorities by protesting against the country's strict anti-homosexual laws. 

Lead singer Matty Healy sparked fury within the government by attacking the anti-gay legislation and kissing a male bandmate during their performance at the start of the Good Vibes Festival last night. 

Healey used profanity in his speech before kissing bass player Ross MacDonald. Footage of the fiasco was posted on social media and sparked a backlash in the predominantly Muslim nation.

George Daniel, from left, Matthew Healy, Adam Hann and Ross MacDonald of The 1975 backstage at the Radio 104.5 10th Birthday party in New Jersey, May 2017 Owen Sweeney/2017 Invision

In response, Malaysia's Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil described Healy's conduct as "very rude."

After meeting the festival organizers Saturday, Fahmi said the festival, which was scheduled to go on this weekend, will be cancelled.

"There will be no compromise with any party that challenges, belittles or violates Malaysian laws," he said in a statement on Facebook. Homosexuality is a crime in the country that is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and caning.

The agency in charge of approving performances by foreign artists said it was disappointed with the band's conduct, calling it "an insult and disrespecting the laws of the country." It said the group will be blacklisted from performing in Malaysia.

It wasn't the first time that Healy used the stage to defend lesbian and gay rights. In 2019, he kissed a male fan during a concert in the United Arab Emirates, which also outlaws homosexual acts, according to media reports.

Posted on 22 Jul 2023 16:52 link