Taylor Swift will no longer be performing at the 2019 Melbourne Cup after a campaign by animal rights groups.
The 29-year-old singer was scheduled to perform a pre-race concert at the Melbourne Cup in Australia. She was announced as the show's headliner in early September and was supposed to perform two songs from her latest album, 'Lover'.
Cancelling only two weeks after declaring this, Michael Gudinski from Mushroom Events released a statement saying, “Regrettably, Taylor is no longer able to make it to this year’s Melbourne Cup. Changes to her Asian promo schedule have made it logistically impossible for her to be here. To all of Taylor’s fans, we hope to see Taylor in Australia in 2020”.
However, an animal rights group called the 'Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses' believes that the singer cancelled because of their campaign to boycott the concert and take a stand against animal abuse. A petition by the group called "Ask Taylor Swift to Say #NupToTheCup" received over 6,000 signatures and asked the singer to "use her voice to make a strong statement that animal abuse is unacceptable". The petition also declares that Taylor Swift was "either completely unaware of the cruel reality of horse racing or she has put money before compassion by agreeing to perform".
Several fans took to social media asking Taylor Swift to say #NupToTheCup asking her to cancel if she "cares at all about other animals the way she appears to care about cats". When the news of a "scheduling conflicts" arose, fans were overjoyed and confident that the singer had "made this decision based on her love for animals and are very grateful to her for her cancellation".
The Victoria Racing Club, organizers of the Melbourne Cup were understandably upset and CEO Neil Wilson said, "The VRC has learned that Taylor Swift is now unable to make the trip to Australia and therefore cannot be with us on Melbourne Cup Day. Obviously, this is disappointing for everyone".