The Icelandic star has been axed from Serbia’s EXIT festival after dedicating a song to Kosovo.
Bjork angered her Chinese fanbase following a spontaneous “Tibet! Tibet!” declaration during “Declare Independence” when playing in Shanghai. The outburst at the finale of Bjork’s Sunday-night concert has highlighted Beijing’s rule over Tibet.
Bjork’s statement was not reported in Chinese news media but the internet has been awash with angry comment after word leaked out.
Bjork commented: “I have been asked by many for a statement after dedicating my song “declare independence” to both Kosovo and Tibet(amongst others ) on different occasions. I would like to put importance on that I am not a politician, I am first and last a musician and as such I feel my duty to try to express the whole range of human emotions. The urge for declaring independence is just one of them but an important one that we all feel at some times in our lives. This song was written more with the personal in mind but the fact that it has translated to its broadest meaning, the struggle of a suppressed nation, gives me much pleasure. I would like to wish all individuals and nations good luck in their battle for independence. Justice !”
Bjork is the latest of a host of singers to play in China. Until a couple of years ago only the safest pop was allowed. Lately, more risqué acts have come to China but bands like The Rolling Stones have stuck closely to the agreed text to avoid offending their hosts.