For immediate release
March 25, 2006 (Singapore) - Feelin' Good, a party organised by gay and lesbian media and events company Fridae, has been cancelled after the venue, Ministry of Sound, received a telephone call from local police on Friday evening demanding that they cease venue provision for the event.
According to Mr. Clement Lee, executive director of Ministry of Sound's parent company LifeBrandz, Mr Kelvin Yeo, Compliance Management Officer from Tanglin Police called on Friday evening after office hours demanding that the club cancel the event, failing which enforcement officers would come to the club on Sunday to shut the party down. The reason given by the police to Mr. Lee over the telephone was that the party would "promote gay activities."
Whilst Singapore laws prohibit gay sex, there are no laws against being gay. As recently as 2003, then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong was interviewed in Time Magazine about the Singapore government's non-discrimination policy for employment in the civil service, and was quoted saying gays are "just like you and me."
Singapore has a thriving gay scene that includes more than dozen organisations, bars and establishments catering primarily to a gay or lesbian clientele.
Feelin' Good would have been Fridae's first party in Singapore in more than a year and a half, featuring popular Australian DJ Kate Monroe.
In response to previous criticism by current Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong that Fridae's parties "should not be targeted at gays alone" (December 2004), Feelin' Good has been actively promoted to the mainstream public through a variety of media, including Lush 99.5FM radio and local publications IS and Juice.
"The reaction from the police has been completely unexpected," said Dr Stuart Koe, CEO of Fridae. "Feelin' Good is simply a party, not unlike any party held at clubs all around Singapore. There is no legal justification for what the police has done. This is yet another example of institutionalised discrimination against gays and lesbians."
Fridae regrets the turn of events and will offer full refunds to ticket holders. Please refer to the website www.fridae.asia/feelingood for the refund process. We would also like to thank the community and our sponsors for your continued support and understanding.
Fridae is Asia's largest gay and lesbian media and events company, with offices in Hong Kong and Singapore. Most recently, Fridae organised a sold-out party at Ministry of Sound in Taipei last December, as well as a charity gala premiere of Brokeback Mountain in Singapore which raised $25,000 for Action for AIDS. Upcoming events in 2006 are scheduled for Bangkok, San Francisco, and Phuket. Fridae is also a recipient of the Singapore National Arts Council Patron of the Arts Award last year.