British pianist Brendan Kavanagh on Monday held up Taiwan’s national flag during a livestream after having an altercation with a group of Chinese last month.
When Kavanagh, who goes by the name Dr K Boogie Woogie on social media, was recording a livestream from St Pancras International station in London on Jan. 19, a group of Chinese standing in the background loudly insisted that they not be filmed, saying their portrait rights should be protected.
The Chinese, who were holding Chinese flags when the incident occured, said that they would take legal action if their faces and voices were shown online.
Photo: Screen grab from Brendan Kavanagh’s Facebook page
Kavanagh refused to listen, saying the station is a public place.
“We are in a free country, we can film where we want,” he said.
The public piano Kavanagh played, donated by Elton John, was later cordoned off by British authorities due to the incident, he wrote on Facebook on Jan. 25.
After the piano was reopened to the public, Kavanagh held up Taiwan’s flag during a livestream at the station on Monday, saying: “I’m supporting Taiwan.”
Kavanagh then posted a photograph on Facebook of him standing on the piano stool holding up the flag.
It received supportive messages from Taiwanese and others, including Democratic Progressive Party Taipei City Councilor Vincent Chao (趙怡翔), who wrote: “Keep fighting the good fight!”
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Hung Mong-kai (洪孟楷) wrote that “The ROC [republic of China] flag symbolizes liberty, equality and philanthropy,” and Kaohsiung Department of Tourism director-general Kao Min-lin (高閔琳) thanked Kavanagh for his support.
“Awesome to see friends demonstrating support for #Taiwan in the #UK & giving a shout-out to our peace-loving people,” Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) wrote on X yesterday.
Wu invited Kavanagh to visit Taiwan “to celebrate love for music & freedom of expression in a place where #China ALSO holds zero jurisdiction!”
Hsiao said that the ministry welcomes people from all over the world who support democracy and freedom to support Taiwan.
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