Notorious ‘anti-semitic’ jazz performer cancelled by Southsea club

A NOTORIOUS ‘anti-semitic’ jazz musician who was supposed to be performing in Southsea on Friday has been cancelled after his political views came to light.

Tuesday, 26th March 2019, 6:32 pm
Gilad Atzmon

Gilad Atzmon, a renowned British artist and author, had that deja vu feeling after being given the boot by Southsea club Coastguard Studio.

The musician was due to be playing at the venue, located at The Strand, on Friday, after being booked weeks ago.

The studio had posted on its website about the upcoming performance: ‘Gilad Atzmon is a British Jazz artist and author. Gilad was born in Israel in 1963 and trained at the Rubin Academy of Music, Jerusalem (Composition and Jazz).

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Gilad Atzmon

‘A multi-instrumentalist he plays saxophones, clarinet and ethnic woodwind instruments . His album Exile was the BBC jazz album of the year in 2003.’

But the owner of Coastguard Studio, who did not want to be named, said he cancelled the performer as soon as he found out about his political views after not wanting to ‘upset’ people.

He said: ‘We’ve cancelled his performance. We do not support those kind of views in any way so took the decision after I read up about him.

‘I didn’t book him – it was done by someone from Chichester who was holding an event at the studio. They didn’t know about his views either.

‘There is no way we can have someone like that at the studio as it may upset people.’

He added: ‘We’ve sold 108 tickets for the night but that was not just to see (Mr Atzmom). That is for the whole evening which is still going ahead.’

Mr Atzmon was banned from performing with rock band The Blockheads in 2017 after complaints were made to Islington Council. He was due to perform at the council-owned Islington Assembly Hall.

Mr Atzmon appealed but the council rejected his appeal after saying his presence ‘might harm relationships’.

The jazz musician was also under the microscope when Labour MP Chris Williamson was forced to apologise for backing a petition in support of Mr Atzmon in December 2018.

A Labour spokesman called Mr Atzmon ‘a vile antisemite’ and said it was right Williamson had apologised.