Pussy Riot, Imagine Dragons, Flaming Lips to Denounce Putin at Tonight's CBGB Festival Inbox
CBGB Festival is honored to announce they are executive producing Amnesty International's Human Rights concert in Brooklyn tonight.
Two recently jailed members of Pussy Riot, the Russian punk rock collective, will join an all-star line-up to denounce Vladimir Putin's treatment of dissidents and LGBT activists just days before the start of the Sochi Olympics. They will appear on stage alongside artists including Imagine Dragons, The Flaming Lips, The Fray, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Tegan and Sara, Colbie Caillat, Cold War Kids, Cake, Yoko Ono and Sir Bob Geldof at Amnesty's Bringing Human Rights Home concert produced by CBGB and to be held at the Barclays Center tonight, February 5th.
Tickets on sale now at Ticketmaster.com.
Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina, who were arrested in March 2012 for making an anti-Putin protest video and imprisoned for 21 months until their amnesty last month, are now traveling to Europe and the United States to raise international awareness of prison conditions and other issues.
"We feel proud to be working with this important group of artists who are helping support and draw attention to human rights around the world," said Tim Hayes, the concert's executive producer and CBGB Festival founder.
"Specifically, we hope that the event will help raise awareness about the LGBT community in Russia and important activists, like Pussy Riot, who have faced prison for expressing dissenting views about the government and religion."
Putin's decision to release Tolokonnikova and Alekhina was widely interpreted as an attempt to appease international opinion ahead of the Sochi Winter Olympics and defuse criticisms of his increasingly tattered human rights record
Putin has also sought to reassure LGBT competitors they will face no problems in Sochi, while at the same denouncing the spread of gay "propaganda" and saying Russia needs to be "cleansed" of homosexuality to increase its birth rate.
The decision to prosecute Pussy Riot members for an anti-Putin video shot in a church caused an international outcry, as did a new anti-gay law championed by Putin to shield children from exposure to "nontraditional sexual relations." Continuing protests on both issues have threatened to overshadow the Sochi games and have forced Putin to make a number of concessions, including the qualified lifting of a ban on public protest at the games themselves.
Since their release, the Pussy Riot members have not relented in their criticisms of Putin, describing a review ordered to look at their criminal cases as a "PR stunt" and expressing skepticism that true dissenters will be able to voice their opinions at Sochi at all.
About CBGB & OMFUG and CBGB Productions:
CBGB has been discovering and presenting the best in live music and culture for 40 years. Since 2012, CBGB Productions has been creating unique and unforgettable experiences through the production of live events, such as the annual CBGB Music and Film Festival, the country's largest entertainment festival of its kind. Learn more at http://www.cbgb.com.
Photo Credit: Albert Mitchell