LGBTQ+ rights groups praise Melanie C for pulling out of New Year’s Eve appearance on state broadcaster

Melanie C holding LGBTQ flag

Melanie C has pulled out of a New Year’s Eve concert in Poland after being made aware of issues “that do not align with the communities I support”.

The former Spice Girl had been due to perform in the town of Zakopane on Saturday.

She didn’t specify why she cancelled her appearance, but her decision was praised by LGBTQ+ rights groups and allies.

Polish authorities and the TV station organising the concert have been widely criticised in recent years for their stances on LGBTQ+ rights.

The singer, whose real name is Melanie Chisholm, wrote on her social media, “In light of some issues that have been brought to my attention, that do not align with the communities I support, I’m afraid I will no longer be able to perform in Poland as planned on New Year’s Eve. I hope to be back there very soon. Hope you’re all having a wonderful Christmas and best wishes for 2023. Melanie xxx.”

The New Year’s Eve show is being organised by state broadcaster TVP, who said she had withdrawn “under the pressure of online comments”.

Those praising her decision included left-wing Polish politicians Robert Biedron and Beata Maciejewska, who wrote: “Equality is equality. No discussion or compromise.”

Poland was recently found to have the worst protections for LGBTQ+ people in the European Union, according to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association.

Same-sex marriage is not recognised in the majority Catholic country, while some regions of Poland enacted largely symbolic, same-sex free zones, prompting ambassadors of more than 50 countries to protest the move.

Andrzej Duda, the president, has also vowed to ban LGBTQ+ teaching in schools, as well as prevent same-sex couples from adopting children.