Gay marriage and/or any homosexual activity is illegal in the United Arab Emirates
LGBT advocates are not happy with Beyoncé’s invite-only Dubai concert that took place on Saturday (Jan 21.).
To inaugurate the grand opening of luxury hotel Atlantis, The Royal in Dubai, Beyoncé held an exclusive concert accompanied by Firdaus, a 48-person all-female orchestra and the Mayyas, an all-female precision dance group from Lebanon.
Her first live show in five years, Beyoncé gave an hour long performance opening with Etta James’ “At Last.” Her 17-song set included fan favorites, “Halo,” “Crazy in Love,” “Flaws and All” and “Be Alive.”
Blue Ivy, 11, joined Beyoncé to perform “Brown Skin Girl”, a collaboration with her mother that won them both a Grammy Award in 2021.
Songs from her latest album, Renaissance, were not on her set list.
Released last summer, Renaissance, is Beyoncé’s first house-inspired album dedicated to listeners seeking joy and escapism during the pandemic. The seventh studio album also paid homage to the LGBTQ who sought liberation through dance and disco music. She even shared that the album was dedicated to her late gay uncle Johnny.
Hence, some members from the LGBTQ are divided on Beyonce’s performance in Dubai, a country with strict anti-LGBTQ policies.
Bev Jackson, co-founder of the British advocacy group LGB Alliance, sat with The Telegraph to expressed her disappointment in Beyoncé’s choice to perform in Dubai.
“Beyoncé is a huge icon for many gay people,” Bev Jackson told The Telegraph Sunday. “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 offense, potentially punishable by death.”
In contrast, not all supporters of the LGBTQ community were upset. Media personality and LGBTQ activist, TS Madison, made it known that she does not share the same sentiments.
She wrote, “So y’all gone be mad at @Beyonce when she perform on her tour in those US States that have anti LGBTQ laws in place? Or are you gone still get your tickets? The selective outrage is workin my #cozy nerves.”
Additionally, others called out the hypocrisy of the backlash when it comes to other artists who perform in Dubai.
A Renaissance tour is slated for the summer of 2023. As of today, official dates for the tour have not been announced.