Lady Gaga Won’t Tone Down Indonesian Concert Despite Protests

Gaga's manager says if show goes on, it will be played 'as it is,' despite threats of violence from Islamic groups in Jakarta.

Lady Gaga’s June 3 concert in Jakarta, Indonesia, has already drawn protests — and threats of violence — from Islamic groups within the nation, who say her risqué Born This Way Ball promotes promiscuity and homosexuality. But according to Gaga’s manager, she has no plans to tone down her act.

While speaking at the annual Music Matters conference in Singapore on Thursday, Troy Carter addressed the ongoing controversy over the June 3 concert, saying that Gaga would not bow to pressure and perform a censored version of the show.

“We play the show as it is, it’s a very specific show to a very specific audience,” Carter said, according to Singapore’s Straits Times newspaper. “Truth be told, she’s not up there nude, she’s not doing anything provocative for the sake of being provocative.”

Early reports had Gaga canceling the show at Jakarta’s Gelora Bung Karno Stadium after Indonesia’s national police denied her a permit, citing concerns over threats from Islamic hard-liners and the nature of Gaga’s performance. Gaga herself addressed the issue earlier this week via Twitter, explaining, “The Jakarta situation is 2-fold:
Indonesian authorities demand I censor the show & religious extremists separately are threatening violence. … If the show goes on as scheduled, I will perform the BTWB alone.”

Indonesian police demand that before a permit can be issued, promoters for the show must ensure Gaga is “dressed appropriately and does not violate the cultural norms in this country,” according to the Agence France-Presse news service. And several of the country’s top Islamic groups, including the National Ulema Council and the more militant Islamic Defenders Front, have protested her performance, calling it “blasphemous” and threatening to “create havoc” if the concert goes ahead as planned.

During his Music Matters speech, Carter said that he was still in negotiations with the Indonesian police in the hopes of obtaining a permit for the show. He added that at this time he does not know whether the concert will take place as scheduled.