Roger Waters denies cancelling Poland gigs due to backlash over Ukraine comments

Roger Waters denies cancelling Poland gigs due to backlash over Ukraine comments

Roger Waters has denied claims that he has cancelled his forthcoming concerts in Poland amid backlash to his comments on Ukraine.

Local news outlets had reported that the Pink Floyd bassist had pulled two gigs in Krakow in April, following outrage over a letter in which he blamed “extreme nationalists” for having “set [Ukraine] on the path to this disastrous war”.

Venue official Lukasz Pytko said that Waters’ manager had “decided to withdraw” the shows “without giving any reason”.

In a statement shared on Facebook on Sunday (25 September), Waters said that “assertions that either, I or my management, has cancelled my forthcoming shows in Krakow” were “wrong”.

“We haven’t,” he wrote, claiming that a Polish town councillor “has threatened to hold a meeting asking the council to declare me ‘Persona non grata’ because of my public efforts to encourage all involved in the disastrous war in Ukraine, especially the governments of the USA and Russia, to work towards a negotiated peace”.

Waters said that the councillor “seems to know nothing of my history of working, all my life, at some personal cost, in the service of human rights” and “urged the good people of Krakow not to buy tickets to my show”.

“[If] my forthcoming concerts in Krakow are cancelled, it will be a sad loss for me, because I have been looking forward to sharing my message of love with the people of Poland, something I have been doing on many tours over a career that has lasted in excess of fifty years,” he continued.

“And also, regrettably, it will deny the people of Krakow the opportunity to see my current show, This Is Not A Drill, which is an important addition to a lifetime’s body of work. [These] draconian censoring of my work will deny them the opportunity to make up their own minds.”