1975: The company that organized a Malaysian festival canceled after a kiss between two male members of ”The 1975” is seeking $2.7 million in damages from the British indie-rock band, its lawyer has said.
Homosexuality is illegal in Muslim-majority Malaysia and The Good Vibes music festival in Kuala Lumpur was canceled after band frontman Matt Healy kissed bassist Ross McDonald during their performance which is held recently on 21 July. He also condemned the country’s anti-LGBTQ+ laws from the stage.
However, Malaysian government ministers maintain before pushed to ban the group from the country and include canceled shows in Muslim-majority Indonesia as well as Taiwan following the controversy.
The Good Vibes concert in Kuala Lumpur was canceled after the band’s frontman Matt Healy uttered profanity and kissed bassist Ross MacDonald during the July 21 performance.
“I can confirm that my firm issued a seven-day letter of claim to the UK band 1975 demanding RM12.3 million [$2.68m] in damages on behalf of Future Sound Asia (FSA),” David Dinesh Mathew, the lawyer for event organizer FSA said in a statement on Friday.
David said the claim pointed on Monday against the band was “essentially for breach of contract”.
Healy’s spokesperson expressed that signed a pre-show written assurance that the band would “adhere to all local guidelines and regulations” in their set.
David said the cancellation of the festival after his show “had an impact on local artists and small businesses” who depend on the festival for their livelihood.
The band has until Monday to respond to the letter.
Healy told Malaysian fans on stage that the band had considered pulling out of the festival on Friday, saying: “I do not see the point of inviting ”The 1975” to a country and then telling us who we can have sex with.”
Malaysian government ministers condemned the singer for violating local customs and took steps to ban the group from the country.
Some LGBTQ+ individuals in Malaysia blamed Healy on social media, stating that her actions made their condition even additional challenging.
Following the uproar, the band canceled shows in Muslim-majority Indonesia and Taiwan.
The onstage protest was not the first for Healy, who kissed a male fan at a 2019 concert in the United Arab Emirates, which also has strict anti-LGBTQ+ laws.