Pop star, Madonna, will hit the stage for two songs at the Eurovision Song Contest in Israel next month.
Reports suggest that the ‘Material Girl’ singer will perform an old favourite and a new song on the show, with Tel Aviv businessman Sylvan Adams reportedly covering the singer’s expenses and $1 million fee.
This year’s musical spectacular, during which European nations and Australia compete for best song, will be held in Israel following local star Netta Barzilai’s win in 2018 with the song, ‘Toy.’
The choice of Israel as the host country has however, stirred up a storm of protest from activists who have urged performers to boycott the competition as a protest for Israel’s treatment of its Palestinian neighbours.
Artists like Pink Floyd and Roger Waters have led the charge, while other stars like Brian Eno and Wolf Alice have joined former Eurovision finalists to call for a boycott in an open letter which reads: “Until Palestinians can enjoy freedom, justice and equal rights to all humans, there should be no business-as-usual with the state that is denying them their basic rights.”
Meanwhile, Australia’s Eurovision pick, Kate Miller-Heidke, has responded to Roger Waters personal call for her to stay away. The classically-trained star, who will perform her song ‘Zero Gravity’ at this year’s contest, told the Press Association, “I absolutely respect his point of view, but for me, personally, the idea of completely blocking off an entire people, an entire country, from music, culture and learning is not just it. It is not just art that they are trying to block but academia and stopping the free flow of learning and information into a country. I just can’t see how that is going to advance that part of the world towards solution.
“I have a lot to learn and I am looking forward to being there for two and a half weeks and having the chance to meet Palestinians and people from different sides and deepen my learning and understanding.”