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Stormzy cancels festival show claiming his friends and manager were 'racially profiled' by security

The British rapper said he needed to “make a point about racism”.

Stormzy at last year's Brit awards.
Stormzy at last year's Brit awards.
Image: Victoria Jones

BRITISH MUSICIAN STORMZY has apologised to fans after he cancelled his headline show at an Austrian festival saying his friends and manager were racially profiled ahead of the gig.

The rapper said he took the “drastic step” hours before Wednesday’s show because he needed to “make a point against racism”.

Stormzy’s decision came after security staff at the Snowbombing festival conducted weapons searches of his manager and friends.

The festival has apologised to the artist and said security had been told an individual may be carrying a weapon.

Writing on Instagram, Stormzy said:

“My sincerest apologies to anyone who travelled all that way to watch me perform. I’m genuinely upset that you’ve wasted your time and money and that burns me more than you’d know.”

The last ever thing I wanna do is let down anyone who’s taken time out to support me. So please hear me out, I too would be fuming if I travelled and spent money to go and watch an artist and they pull out last minute.

“However, if these are the drastic steps that I need to take to make a point against racism and racial profiling, then trust me I’m taking it.”

“And I’m very genuinely sorry that it’s unfortunately at the expense of supporters and festival go-ers who’ve spent there (sic) hard earned money and time”

My manager and all my friends who were at the festival were racially profiled, targeted and aggressively handled because they (security) had ‘reason to believe someone was carrying a weapon’.

He added: “The security targeted them (despite no one fitting the description), were physically aggressive when handling them and there’s been no effort from the festival to actually deal and address the problem.”

“This is the kind of soul draining shit black people gotta deal with all the fucking time, and I’m sick of it so fuck the festival and fuck the performance,” Stormzy added.

In its statement following Stormzy’s cancellation, the Snowbombing festival acknowledged what had happened but said what was done was “in accordance with protocol”.

“Last night Snowbombing’s security were alerted to the possibility that an individual at the festival was allegedly carrying a weapon. In accordance with protocol, a small number of attendees, including Stormzy’s manager were escorted to the nearest exit, searched and no weapon was found. Stormzy’s management were unhappy with the manner by which this took place and as a result Stormzy will no longer be performing tonight,” the festival said.

Snowbombing would like to wholeheartedly apologise to Stormzy’s team. We are doing everything we can to understand the full situation and are treating this with the utmost seriousness to ensure this does not happen again.

In response to some people who were unhappy with his decision, Stormzy defended his decision.

Responding to the question: “Yeah but we paid all this money and travelled here, couldn’t you just do it?????’”, Stormzy posted to Instagram:

“The answer is no, I can’t do it. It burns me that you guys are the ones who lose out but shit ain’t kool and it can’t run.”

About the author:

Rónán Duffy

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