<!--[if IE]><![endif]-->

Taylor Swift cancels concert amid animal rights criticism

  • 21 September 2019
Taylor Swift performing at the 2019 MTV VMAs Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Animal rights groups urged Taylor Swift to boycott the Melbourne Cup

Taylor Swift has cancelled her performance at the Melbourne Cup horse racing event in Australia.

The Cup announced Swift as its headline act earlier this month, but cancelled on Saturday, citing scheduling issues.

The singer had been criticised by animal rights groups, who accused her of "endorsing animal abuse".

Six horses have died at the Cup since 2013, including one horse who was euthanised on the course last year after fracturing his shoulder.

The Cup's organisers have not confirmed who will replace Swift as the headline act on 5 November.

Why did Taylor Swift cancel?

On Saturday, Mushroom Events said in a statement that "changes to [Swift's] Asian promo schedule have made it logistically impossible for her to be here" for the Cup.

But the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses, the group that led calls for a boycott, believes Swift cancelled as a result of their campaign.

In a petition posted last week, the group said the singer was "either completely unaware of the cruel reality of horse racing or she has put money before compassion by agreeing to perform" at the races.

"If she cares at all about other animals the way she appears to care about cats, she will cancel her show and use her voice to make a strong statement that animal abuse is unacceptable," they added.

Victoria Racing Club's CEO Neil Wilson said Swift's cancellation would be "disappointing for everyone".

But the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses said they were "absolutely delighted with the news".

"The pressure on Taylor Swift to cancel her performance was significant. Her fans did not want to see her supporting animal abuse," campaign spokeswoman Kristin Leigh said.

"Whilst the reason being used by the racing industry is a scheduling mix up, it appears to us that she has responded to those calls."

Related Topics

More on this story

  • Taylor Swift 'tried to sue' Microsoft over racist chatbot Tay
    10 September 2019
  • Taylor Swift's Lover: Star turns a corner with 'upbeat' but 'baggy' album
    23 August 2019
  • Taylor Swift: 'Saying you're cancelled is like saying kill yourself'
    9 August 2019

Top Stories

Tory MPs call on PM's chief aide Cummings to quit

No 10 says fresh claims about Dominic Cummings - who has been seen going into Downing Street - are "false".

24 May 2020
Pressure grows on PM top aide over lockdown trip
24 May 2020
Israeli PM Netanyahu goes on trial for corruption
24 May 2020


'I'm spending lockdown in Henry VIII's palace'

'My mother saw the coast was clear and made a dash for it'

What did Dominic Cummings do during lockdown?

Farewell to a doughnut shop closed by coronavirus

Coronavirus: Your pictures of 'the view from my window'

'Baffling' observations from the front line

'Expect lots of dramas in space or under the sea'

Claims about flu jabs and vegetarianism fact-checked


When can we hug our friends again?

Elsewhere on the BBC