Greater than 100 acts have pulled out of the Nice Escape music pageant in Brighton as a part of a Palestine-related marketing campaign towards the occasion sponsor Barclays that has been supported by Huge Assault, Idles and Brian Eno.

The pageant’s opening showcase and a keynote speech have been scrapped after performers joined Bands Boycott Barclays, a marketing campaign that claims Barclays Financial institution – which sponsors a number of UK festivals together with the Nice Escape, Latitude and Isle of Wight – has elevated its funding in arms corporations that commerce with Israel.

The annual occasion has change into a key a part of the UK’s music calendar since its launch in 2006, with about 500 artists performing in numerous places round Brighton. This 12 months about 25% of the booked performers have backed out in assist of the marketing campaign.

Jarvis Cocker was as a consequence of give a keynote speech known as Biophobia, described as “a particular climate-themed discuss attending to grips with nature”, hosted by Eno’s charity EarthPercent, however the occasion is not listed on the Nice Escape’s web site.

Anna Calvi, Stormzy and Kae Tempest have all launched their careers on the occasion, however this 12 months it has change into a lightning rod for divisions over the Israel-Gaza battle.

Nick Cave, who has beforehand known as cultural boycotts of Israel “cowardly and shameful”, was requested by a musician who was contemplating boycotting whether or not they need to play or not. He responded just by saying they need to “play”, through his Pink Hand Recordsdata publication.

Huge Assault, Idles and Eno have been amongst dozens of artists who weren’t booked to play on the Nice Escape pageant however signed an open letter launched in April calling for it to drop Barclays as a associate.

Huge Assault’s assertion mentioned: “It’s extraordinary to assume that in 2024 promoters and festivals nonetheless don’t perceive that as artists, our music is on the market however our humanity and morality is just not.”

Within the final week dozens extra artists have joined the boycott, with 120 acts backing out of performing.

Alfie Templeman, one of the crucial established artists as a consequence of play at this 12 months’s occasion, confirmed he wouldn’t carry out and mentioned his “morals can’t and won’t align with the amalgamation of leisure and human struggling”.

A spokesperson for Bands Boycott Barclays mentioned: “Barclays is bankrolling the genocide towards Palestinians in Gaza after which laundering its repute by partnering with music festivals just like the Nice Escape. As musicians, we expect that’s despicable.”

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The Palestine Solidarity Marketing campaign has beforehand known as for a boycott of the financial institution as a result of it claims Barclays holds “substantial monetary ties” with arms corporations supplying weapons to Israel. In March the marketing campaign group protested exterior about 50 branches of the financial institution across the UK.

Barclays declined to remark however flagged a query and reply session throughout the firm’s annual normal assembly the place it addressed the criticism of its relationship with Israeli arms companies, saying: “Barclays is just not a ‘shareholder’ or ‘investor’ … in relation to those corporations”. It added: “We commerce in shares of listed corporations in response to shopper instruction or demand and that will lead to us holding shares.”

The pageant will begin on Wednesday and run for 4 days. The Nice Escape organisers have been contacted for remark.

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