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'I am never surprised at white fragility': Halifax Pop Explosion performer on 'overt racism' at her concert

The Polaris Prize winner says she was angry and annoyed with the white woman's actions, and adds the festival's organizers should release her name to the public

HALIFAX - A performer at this year's Halifax Pop Explosion is calling on the festival's organizers to release the name of a volunteer who disrupted her performance after repeatedly screaming, "why do you hate me because I'm white?".

This comes after the festival's board of directors put out a statement on Thursday, apologizing to Lido Pimienta for one of its volunteer's 'overtly racist' actions.

According to that statement, this was in response to Pimienta inviting 'brown girls to the front' of the venue. 

In an emailed statement, Pimienta told NEWS 95.7 she had called out the white female HPX volunteer, and demanded she be removed.

"I was angry and annoyed at the disrespect," Pimienta said in her emailed statement. 

Pimienta's says she wasn't surprised, as she has encountered similar incidents in the past.

"I am never surprised at white fragility," she said. "I was annoyed at most but mainly worried about the POC femmes at the front whose safety was jeopardized due to this person's violent actions."

The Halifax Pop Explosion's board of directors have since banned that volunteer from ever being able to work future shows, but according to Pimienta, that's not enough. 

"They should take it up a notch and make her name public and have her apologize to me and my audience," said the Polaris Prize-winning singer. "They need some real work and obviously mental health support. Racism is an illness that is dangerous and gets physical and we saw what it did at my show."

Pimienta says she accepts the festival's apology, but adds she hopes "more venues and festivals would own up to their staffs' disgusting behaviour like they did". 


Chris Halef

About the Author: Chris Halef

Chris is a reporter for and NEWS 95.7. In 2018, he won the RTDNA Dave Rogers Award for best short feature.
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