loving black culture, not black people: festival attendees mad at artist for inviting “brown girls to the front”

November 2, 2017
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When Polaris Prize-winning singer Lido Pimienta singer asked
festival-goers at the Halifax Pop Explosion to make room for women of color, calling all “brown girls to the front”, some of the white volunteers and white attendees refused to provide space for WOC during the performance. The negative reaction from certain whites in attendance led to small clashes that interrupted Pimienta’s overall performance and has now spilled over to the internet where white folks have responded with hostility and harassment.

In the wake of the event though, the festival itself has wasted no time to show support for Pimienta, going as far as to issue an apology for “overt racism.” “We are sorry that one of our volunteers interrupted your art, your show, and your audience by being aggressive and racist,” by Halifax Pop Explosion vice-chairman Georgie Dudka write in a letter on Facebook where they also promised to engage “anti-oppression and anti-racism training” over the next year.

In her own statement about the event, Pimienta wrote: “I love my audience. I love men. I love all women, and I am inspired by everyone, but I am not blind to the unsettling effects of colonialism and white supremacy. I will not stop doing everything in my power to make oppressed people feel safe and show them the respect
that they deserve at my shows.”