The 1975 have reportedly been banned from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, after band mates, Matt Healy and Ross MacDonald kissed on stage at Good Vibes Festival
The band’s set was cut short by approximately half an hour on 21 July, after the kiss between the bandmates, due to their actions opposing the anti-LGBTQIA views of the Malaysian government.
Healy explained on stage that he nearly cancelled the set due to the government’s discriminatory practices but decided against it so as not to punish the “kids” for their views.
Healy said: “I’m fucking furious. That’s not fair on you because you aren’t representative of your government. It’s fucking ridiculous to tell people what they can do”.
The kiss between Healy and MacDonald took place during a performance of I Like America And America Likes Me, a track proceeded by a rendition of I Couldn’t Be More In Love.
Healy then announced: “We just got banned from Kuala Lumpur, goodbye” and left the stage.
LGBTQIA people continue to face severe challenges in Malaysia, with laws that go as far as to criminalise some sex acts. There are no laws in place to protect LGBTQIA people in the country and the Human Rights Watch stated that discrimination in the country is “pervasive”.
Healy also said: “I do not see the point of inviting The 1975 to a country and then telling us who we can have sex with”.
The 1975 took a similar stand in 2019 when Healy kissed a male fan in Dubai, where homosexuality is illegal. After the show he Tweeted: “Thank you Dubai you were so amazing… I don’t think we’ll be allowed back due to my ‘behaviour’ but know that I love you and I wouldn’t have done anything differently given the chance again.”
Good Vibes Festival have since released an official statement that says: “We regret that The 1975 performance had to be cut short due to the non-compliance with local performance guidelines. Good Vibes Festival has always been dedicated to providing enjoyable music experiences, and we sincerely appreciate your continued support.”
It is not clear how long the ban will last, but the band are set to continue their tour in Asia and North America before heading back to the UK to headline both Reading and Leeds festival in August.
DIVA magazine celebrates 29 years in print in 2023. If you like what we do, then get behind LGBTQIA media and keep us going for another generation. Your support is invaluable.