Lady Gaga Jakarta concert canceled following outcry
May 30, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Lady Gaga has announced that she is canceling her planned concert for early June in Jakarta, Indonesia, due to security concerns raised by widespread protests against her sexualized performances and disrespectful use of religious imagery.
“We had to cancel the concert in Indonesia,” Gaga tweeted to her fans. “I’m so very sorry to the fans & just as devastated as you if not more,” she wrote. “You are everything to me.”
“I will try to put together something special for you. My love for Indonesia has only grown,” Gaga added. In another tweet, she attributed her rejection to “hate” from the Indonesians opposing her presence.
“It’s unfortunate,” said Minola Sebayang, a lawyer for the company promoting the show, “but with threats if the concert goes ahead, Lady Gaga’s side is calling it off. This is not only about Lady Gaga’s security, but extends to those who will be watching her.”
The concert garnered broad opposition from Muslim groups, both moderate and radical, including the Indonesian Ulema Council, the country’s highest ranking Islamic authority.
Although Gaga supporters sought to blame Muslim radicals, police said that they would not issue a permit for the concert without an endorsement from the government’s Ministry of Religious Affairs, an endorsement that was not forthcoming even after Gaga’s organizers reportedly assured the authorities that her performance would be toned down.
In addition to the verbal protests filed by over a dozen Islamic organizations, protesters linked to the more extreme Islamic Defenders Front had stated publicly that they had purchased tickets, and would storm the stage if the performance went forward, to nonviolently bring the show to an end.
Gaga’s “Born this Way Ball,” as she calls her concerts, has also garnered opposition in the majority-Catholic Philippines, where her shows attracted large numbers of protesters and received the condemnation of one Catholic archbishop, as well as South Korea.