eyoncé’s performance in Dubai hasn’t gone down without controversy. Renaissance was lauded for its celebration of the LGBTQIA+ and ballroom communities, but now some fans are about-facing.
Particularly Bev Jackson, the cofounder of LGB Alliance, a British advocacy group founded in 2019, describes its objective as “asserting the right of lesbians, bisexuals and gay men to define themselves as same-sex attracted.”
Jackson doesn’t have an issue with Beyoncé’s performance, but rather the fact that she decided to perform in Dubai, where LGBTQIA+ relationships are not only frowned upon but illegal and deadly, so her performance “casts a shadow over her support for lesbians and gay people.”
“Beyoncé is a huge icon for many gay people. LGB Alliance is deeply therefore disappointed that Beyoncé has agreed to give a lucrative concert in Dubai, where same-sex sex acts are a criminal offence, potentially punishable by death,” Jackson said, according to The Telegraph.
Fans on Twitter also pointed out the supposed hypocrisy that Bey can be an ally but perform in such a strict land.
“I love Bey, but you can’t release a statement album like Renaissance, celebrating LGBTQ+ community and then perform in a country that criminalises and kills LGBTQ+. I love her still but she deserves to hear about it,” wrote one user.
Beyoncé reportedly received $35 million for the hour-long concert, where she performed 19 songs. So some are saying she took a big paycheck over supporting the community that heavily influenced her latest album.
“idk, if I already had $500 million, I don’t think an additional $35 million would be enough money for me to go perform the album I dedicated to my gay uncle in a country where being gay is still punishable by death,” wrote Inside Hook’s Bonnie Stiernberg.
That $35 million gave concertgoers quite the show as it was her first concert in four years. According to The Telegraph, the Texas native propelled 16 feet in the air while the hotel’s fountain ignited fire around her. The private concert was billed as the grand opening for Dubai’s Atlantis The Royal hotel.