- 01 Jul 18
The cancellation of the Manchester singer’s UK and European dates comes amid accusations of racism – and a protest which would have cast a dark shadow over his homecoming.
In what is by any standards a bizarre move, Morrissey has cancelled all of the UK and European dates of his tour – which were scheduled to open on Wednesday, July 4.
The decision was announced via a post on the singer’s official Facebook page. However, the bland nature of the statement will leave fans baffled as to what are the real reasons they have been left high and dry.
"Due to logistical circumstances beyond our control, the UK/European Morrissey Concerts scheduled for July will be postponed,” the statement says.
"We deeply regret any inconvenience to the fans and promise to reschedule UK and European dates as soon as possible. All original purchasers from official ticket outlets will have the full ticket fee refunded, including booking fee, to their credit/debit cards. Refunds from ticket agents will be actioned from midday on Monday 2nd July.
"The LIHS World Tour will continue,” the statement insists, "starting back up in Mexico City and South America starting on November 23rd. Watch for more dates to be added soon!
"The LIHS World Tour has been Morrissey's most successful tour to date, having achieved record business for the artist in both the U.S. and The UK. We thank all the fans for their support."
So why has Morrissey cancelled his dates in the UK and Europe – and not elsewhere? Therein lies the conundrum. One potential explanation is that he had become concerned about the impact of protests that had been planned to coincide with his appearance in Manchester next week.
The well known British DJ and writer, Dave Haslam, a huge fan of The Smiths, and a one-time friend of Morrissey, has been vocal in his criticisms of the Manchester star, following expressions of support from Morrissey, for Tommy Robinson – the founder of the far right English Defence League, who is currently serving a 10 month prison sentence.
Morrissey had been scheduled to play Castlefield Bown in Manchester. An anti-racism protest event, One Nation Under A Groove, was organised by Haslam to happen simultaneously at Deansgate Lock. “It might not be a coincidence that the venue is just a few hundred yard from where Morrissey is playing,” Haslam told the BBC. One NationUnder A Groove – a free event – will still go ahead, with donations – which will be collected at the gate – going to the Love Music Hate Racism charity. Haslam has described the decision to cancel the Morrissey dates as “the best turn off events ever."
For avid Morrissey watchers – and he has always been a Hot Press favourite – there is no doubt that his apparent drift towards a xenophobic form of nationalism has been deeply disturbing. That he has often come across as contrary goes without saying. But for many long-term fans – like Dave Haslam – his latest political pronunciations have proven a bridge too far.
Developments will be watched with considerable interest over the coming weeks.