Lady Gaga cancelled a planned Indonesia concert on Sunday because of security concerns over objections by Islamic groups to her “vulgar” style.
Local promoters Big Daddy Entertainment said on their website that the sold-out June 3 “Born This Way Ball” concert in the capital, Jakarta, was cancelled and that 100 per cent refunds would be given to ticket holders.
The US singer, known for her outrageous stunts and provocative costumes, said in a message on Sunday to her 25 million Twitter followers: “We had to cancel the concert in Indonesia. I’m so very sorry to the fans and just as devastated as you if not more. You are everything to me.”
“I will try to put together something special for you. My love for Indonesia has only grown,” added Gaga.
Indonesia has the world’s largest population of Muslims. Salim Alatas, the head of the hard-line group Islamic Defender Front, described the “Bad Romance” singer as a “vulgar singer who wears only panties and a bra when she sings and also stated she is the envoy of the devil’s child and that she will spread satanic teachings.”
Demonstrators holding banners saying “Go to hell Lady Gaga” staged protests in Jakarta last week. The Jakarta Post quoted promoters of the concert as saying that the cancellation was due to fears not only for the pop star’s safety, but for the 52,000 fans who had bought tickets.
National police had refused to give Lady Gaga a permit, citing the security concerns, but they were in talks with the shows’ promoters and tickets were still sold.
Last week Gaga said that Indonesian authorities were demanding her to censor the show, and that she was considering ditching her backup dancers and performing solo in Jakarta.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 29th, 2012.