A group of artists including Roger Waters, Thurston Moore, TV on the Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe, and more have called on fellow musicians to boycott Israel, citing the mistreatment of Palestinian people, state surveillance of social media, and the expansion of illegal settlements. Though they were unsuccessful in persuading Radiohead and Nick Cave to cancel recent concerts in the country, their argument convinced Lorde, who has now scrapped the June 5th performance in Tel Aviv.
In a statement explaining her decision, Lorde wrote, “I’ve received an overwhelming number of messages and letters and have had a lot of discussions with people holding many views, and I think the right decision at this time is to cancel the show,” Lorde explained in a statement.
“I pride myself on being an informed young citizen, and I had done a lot of reading and sought a lot of opinion 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 added.
Prior to Lorde announcing her decision, Justine Sachs and Nadia Abu-Shanab penned an open letter to the singer in her native New Zealand publication The Spinoff. “[A] performance in Israel sends the wrong message,” they wrote. “Playing in Tel Aviv will be seen as giving support to the policies of the Israeli government, even if you make no comment on the political situation. Such an effect cannot be undone by even the best intention and the best music.”
Lorde responded to Sachs and Abu-Shanab on Twitter. “Noted! Been speaking w many people about this and considering all options. Thank u for educating me i am learning all the time too,” she tweeted.