Story at a glance
- While performing at the Thompson-Boling Arena in Knoxville, Lizzo brought in a number of drag artists, including Aquaria, Kandy Muse, Asia O’Hara, and Vanessa Vanji.
- In February, Republican Governor Bill Lee signed a law against “adult discotheque” in public or in front of minors.
KNOXVILLE, Tennessee (AP) — At a concert Friday night in Knoxville, Tennessee, Lizzo filled the stage with drag queens in a flashy protest against state legislation designed to restrict drag shows in public.
While performing at the Thompson-Boling Arena, the Grammy Award-winning “Juice” singer brought out a number of drag artists, including Aquaria, Kandy Muse, Asia O’Hara, and Vanessa Vanji. On Saturday, Lizzo Posting videos on Instagram of the showincluded Comments on the crowd who referred to the pending law.
In February, Republican Governor Bill Lee signed legislation against “adult discotheques” in public or in front of minors. a A federal judge temporarily banned the law in late March, saying it was very vaguely written. Civil rights groups criticized the law as an infringement of free speech.
Tennessee law is part of a A broader Republican effort to restrict raffle offers and other LGBTQ+ public gatherings.
“In light of recent tragic events and current events, people on the Internet have told me, ‘Cancel your shows in Tennessee,’ ‘Don’t go to Tennessee,'” Lizzo said during Friday’s ceremony. “Their reason was valid, but why don’t I come to the people who need to hear this message the most?”
“Why don’t I create a safe space in Tennessee where we can celebrate drag artists and celebrate our differences?” Lizzo added.
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