PublishedThu, 30 Aug 2018, 12:13
- DJ Seinfeld, Shanti Celeste and others have also cancelled their appearances over concerns about Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.
A handful of artists, including Volvox and DJ Python, have cancelled upcoming appearances at Meteor Festival in Israel.
Due to take place from September 6th through 8th, Meteor has become a focal point of the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions movement, which seeks to boycott Israel culturally and economically over its treatment and occupation of Palestinian territories. In a statement, a group of organizations under the BDS banner outlines their opposition to the festival, saying that promoter Naranjah employs artists as "international ambassadors" for Israel to improve its image from the outside. BDS also calls out Meteor for recommending attendees to stay in Israeli settlements in the occupied Golan Heights.
In the past few weeks, artists including US producers DJ Python and Volvox have posted statements explaining their decisions to pull out of Meteor Festival.
"Although I sincerely believe that the promoters of the festival had the best intentions to bring many of the world's most forward-thinking artists to Israel for a unifying and positive musical experience," said Volvox in a Facebook post. "I think the situation is far too complex for a single person to unpack and take responsibility for."
DJ Python tweeted that he was initially thinking of playing the festival and donating the money to Pro-Palestinian causes, before deciding to pull out altogether.
Shanti Celeste and DJ Seinfeld have also been removed from the Meteor lineup, but did not release public statements. Ross From Friends tweeted that he was offered to play the festival and "gladly turned it down." (Update: Ross From Friends deleted the tweet today and explained why in another Twitter thread: "I still stand by my decision to support the people of Palestinian, and this is the only reason I declined the invitation to the festival.")
Last week, the Meteor Festival team issued a statement, insisting they are a "independent, private project" and that they are "pretty much the only festival in the world who's 100 percent politics free." They write: "We built this event brick by brick by ourselves, asking or receiving no support, funds or benefits from any governmental or political entity... We do not collaborate with any government or embassy, and we are covering everything ourselves out of pocket money and bank loans. The location of the festival is non-controversial. A private land chosen specifically as we have intended, from the start, to create as inclusive a setting as possible." Read the full statement on their website.
Artists due to play Meteor in September include Leon Vynehall, Honey Dijon, Midori Takada, Nina Kraviz, Flying Lotus, Kamasi Washington and DJ Koze, as well as Lana Del Rey, who has been refusing calls from BDS activists to cancel her performance. Dijon has defended playing the festival on Twitter: "Of course I have views on things happening in humanity, but I can't be everything for everybody. My mission as an artist is to bring people together, not separate them."
Resident Advisor has contacted Meteor Festival for comment. We will update if we hear back.
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