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Malaysia organizer seeks $2.7 million from British band whose homosexual kiss received a music pageant canceled

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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — The organizer of a Malaysian music pageant is looking for 12.3 million ringgit ($2.7 million) in losses from British band The 1975, after its lead singer’s on-stage protest of the nation’s anti-gay legal guidelines prompted authorities to close down the pageant, the corporate’s lawyer mentioned Friday.

Future Sound Asia despatched a letter to the band on Monday demanding compensation over a breach of contract, mentioned FSA lawyer David Dinesh Mathew.

Through the July 21 efficiency, Matty Healy used profanities in his speech criticizing the Malaysian authorities’s stance in opposition to homosexuality, earlier than kissing bassist Ross MacDonald in the course of the opening present on the Good Vibes Pageant in Kuala Lumpur. Footage of the efficiency was posted on social media and sparked backlash within the predominantly Muslim nation.

In Malaysia, homosexuality is a criminal offense punishable by as much as 20 years in jail and caning.

The federal government slammed Healy’s conduct, blacklist the band from the nation and lower quick the three-day pageant. Some within the LGBTQ+ neighborhood additionally took to social media to criticize the band, saying Healy had disrupted the work of activists pushing for change and in addition endangered the neighborhood.

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Within the letter, Mathew mentioned the band had given a written pledge earlier than the present that it will adhere to all native pointers and rules. As an alternative, Healy’s “use of abusive language, tools injury, and indecent stage behaviour” precipitated monetary losses to FSA.

“Sadly, the reassurance was ignored,” Mathew mentioned Friday in a written assertion to The Related Press. “Their actions have had repercussions on native artists and small companies, who relied on the pageant for artistic alternatives and their livelihoods.”

As such, he mentioned FSA demanded that The 1975 acknowledge their legal responsibility and pay 12.3 million ringgit in compensation for damages incurred.

On its web site, FSA mentioned it’s within the midst of accommodating all refund requests.

The lawyer mentioned FSA will take authorized motion within the courts of England if the band fails to reply by Monday, every week after the authorized letter of declare was despatched.

The band canceled its reveals in Taiwan and Jakarta, Indonesia, after the fiasco within the Malaysian capital. It wasn’t the primary such provocative on-stage show by Healy within the identify of LGBTQ+ rights: In 2019, he kissed a male fan throughout a live performance within the United Arab Emirates, which outlaws same-sex sexual exercise.

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