A-mei fans call for boycott of Chinese stars in retaliation

BY STAFF WRITER

Tue, Jun 15, 2004 - Page 1

Fans of Taiwanese pop singer Chang Hui-mei (張惠妹), better known as A-mei, rallied online yesterday in response to the cancelation of her performance in China on Saturday, calling on Taiwanese fans to boycott entertainers from China, such as popular singers Faye Wong (王非) and Na Ying (那英).

Chang was forced to cancel a performance in China on Saturday night due to a protest by students from Zhejiang University (浙江大學), who accused her of being a supporter of Taiwan's independence.

Chang was previously blacklisted by China for singing the national anthem at President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) 2000 presidential inauguration.

Fans, angry with Chinese opposition to Chang, unleashed anti-China sentiment on chatrooms and discussion boards online yesterday, some calling for boycotts and other saying that A-mei should just forget about China and focus on singing in Taiwan.

Other fans, however, argued back that Saturday's situation had nothing to do with Chinese entertainers and that they should be left alone.

On her return to Taiwan Sunday night, Chang was low-key about the cancelation, saying that she was saddened by the Chinese response and that she was just trying to fulfill her obligations as an entertainer.

Chang, who has other performances planned for China this summer, said on Sunday that she plans to keep to schedule.

Calls to Chang's record company yesterday were met with the terse reply that "everything has already been said."

Politicians from different parties also voiced their opinions yesterday.

The concert cancellation was an uncalled for political move, said People First Party lawmaker Sheu Yuan-kuo (許淵國). Chang's performance at Chen's 2000 inauguration was the highest honor that could be granted a musician, and has nothing to do with Taiwan's independence, he added.

Democratic Progressive Party caucus Director-General Tsai Huang-liang (蔡煌瑯) said that the cancelation was a blow against Taiwan's culture.

Also see story:

Editorial: A-mei: enemy of the state