Cassandra Wilson calls off Israeli gig - Israel Culture, Ynetnews
 
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She Who Cancels

American jazz musician Cassandra Wilson
American jazz musician Cassandra Wilson 
 
 

Cassandra Wilson calls off Israeli gig

A day shy of Holon International Women's Festival concert, organizers learn American musician cancels; claims pro-Palestinians pressed her to join ban on Israel

Merav Yudilovich
Published: 02.23.12, 15:28 / Israel Culture

American jazz musician Cassandra Wilson has canceled her trip to Israel on Tuesday, just a day shy of her planned gig at Holon International Women's Festival.

 

The festival's organizers claimed pro-Palestinians pressured the singer into joining the cultural ban on Israel. Wilson's performance was supposed to be the main attraction at the festival.

 

Relates stories:

 

Director of the Holon Theater and Women's Festival, Guy Telem, said the cancelation caught him off guard. "We heard the news months after signing the contract and a day after Wilson was fully paid for her performance. Up until the payment we hadn't heard about any plan to cancel.

 


תומכת בחרם על ישראל (צילום: קסנדרה ווילסון)

Cassandra Wilson joins ban against Israel

 

"When I talked to Wilson I told her that the cancelation would cause great disappointment to her fans in Israel and to the audience that had already bought tickets to the concert. She said that she identifies with the cultural ban on Israel because she's a human rights activist. I asked her why she only remembered this now and why she hadn't told us at the time the contract was signed. I couldn't get a straight answer."

 

Telem said that most of the tickets to the show had already been sold and now the organizers are contemplating taking legal measures.

 

"I can tell you that we have no intention of giving up," stressed Telem. "There was no time for anger during our conversation since it was a crisis management situation, and we only had a few hours before Cassandra was supposed to board the train to the airport… She sent me examples of emails she had received and I got the impression it was no more than a vociferous minority."

 

"I told her that in the past few years there has been an increase in visits by A-list artists to Israel, and as an example I mentioned Madonna was to open her international tour here and that Guns & Roses had announced they were coming. Everyone that's been here and those who plan to come here gave it their considered opinion.

 

"Aside from the fact that her decision is surprising, the issue has never come up and she's not a child but an active artist who chose to link herself to us contractually and has already received the full payment."

 

He continued to say: "We could have been sympathetic to her decision if the timing had been different, but the way they went about it makes you wonder about their business integrity. We'll handle it as professionally as possible. We have no intention of letting it slide."

 

Those who purchased tickets to Wilson's concert would be able to get a full refund or instead get tickets to the festival's other shows.

 

 

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