Roger Waters Denies Claims About Canceling Shows Due To ‘Persona Non Grata’ Threats

Roger Waters shared a post on Facebook to refute the latest news claiming that he canceled Poland concerts due to his stance on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The former Pink Floyd singer is an outspoken figure who doesn’t hesitate to share his opinions, especially on political matters. The hot topic of the Russia-Ukraine war also didn’t go unnoticed by the musician. Waters criticized the Western governments for providing weapons to Ukraine and blamed US President Joe Biden for provoking the war.

Earlier this month, the musician wrote an open letter to Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska in which he slammed the Ukrainian government for encouraging extremist nationalists. Following his words, Roger Waters faced a massive backlash on social media. A few sources have recently claimed that an official with the Tauron Arena in Kraków revealed that Waters’ two concerts in Poland, which were scheduled for April 2023, would no longer take place due to the singer’s controversial stance on the Ukrainian war.

Following the recent news, Roger Waters took his Facebook and denied the rumors claiming that he canceled the Poland shows. The musician highlighted that neither he nor his management canceled any gigs. So, he will perform in Kraków in the following months as scheduled. Waters confirmed that Kraków councilor Łukasz Wantuch wanted to declare him personal non grata, and prevent him from performing in Poland.

In the meantime, Wantuch published an article encouraging people not to buy tickets for Waters’ upcoming Poland shows. The singer said that if his concerts were canceled, he would be extremely sad since he wanted to share his messages with Polish people. Waters would also be sorry for the people of Poland since they would miss the chance to see his current This Is Not A Drill tour. He would prefer people to stand for their own opinions rather than any kind of censorship of his views.

Roger Waters shared the following statement about his shows in Poland:

“Hey! Łukasz Wantuch, ‘Leave them kids alone!’

Correction Roger Waters didn’t cancel Krakow gigs.

To Nadeem Badshah at the Guardian
And Anna Piatkowska at Gazeta Krakowska

Dear Sir and Madam,

Your papers are wrong in their assertions that either, I or my management, has canceled my forthcoming shows in Krakow, we haven’t.

It is true that a town councilor in Krakow, a Mr. Łukasz Wantuch 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, rather than escalate matters towards a bitter end that could be a nuclear war and the end of all life on this planet.

Notwithstanding that this chap Łukasz Wantuch seems to know nothing of my history of working, all my life, at some personal cost, in the service of human rights, he, in an article in a local newspaper urged the good people of Krakow not to buy tickets to my show. Not very democratic sir?”

The singer continued:

“If Mr. Łukasz Wantuch achieves his aim, and my forthcoming concerts in Krakow are canceled, 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 in many tours over a career that has lasted in excess of fifty years.

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. His draconian censoring of my work will deny them the opportunity to make up their own minds.

Roger Waters.”

The website of Roger Waters hasn’t listed the Kraków shows previously scheduled for April 21-22, yet it is hard to know how things will turn out. The musician has been currently touring North America. After several shows in Mexico, he will head to Europe in March 2023 for more shows in his This Is Not A Drill tour.