New Zealand pop star Lorde made a surprise appearance in her native country, by making a brief special performance for a benefit concert in Christchurch. This event took place at the You Are Us/Aroha Nui benefit concert at the Christchurch stadium, to raise funds for victims of the Christchurch mosque attacks that took place on March 15.
team, lorde aroha nui concert christchruch 17th april. my video pic.twitter.com/tttkdR4eTG
— nadine (@movesIow) April 17, 2019
During the appearance Lorde performed a cover of the classic Simon & Garfunkel anthem “Sound of Silence,” with Marlon Williams, along with her song “Team,” from Pure Heroine, alongside another fellow New Zealander Bic Runga. Other performers at the benefit concert included the Adults, Shihad and Stan Walker.
Lorde , Sound of Silence at You Are Us / Aroha Nui concert at Christchurch Stadium. pic.twitter.com/smAPoq8Zmt
— Pals (@PalPerfectPlace) April 17, 2019
The Christchurch attacks took the lives of 50 worshippers, and injured 50 more during a Friday prayer service at the popular mosque. A 28-year old Australian man, who was identified as being a member of the alt-right, and a white supremacist, was arrested as the perpetrator of the attack.
This incident, along with the recent burning of multiple historically black churches across the US, and the infamous Tree of Life Synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last October, have been tied to a global rise in violence tied to the alt-right and white supremacists in recent years. The number of attacks by far right groups have also quadrupled in the United States since 2016, while incidents have increased by more than 43% in Europe.
Despite these statistics, the president of the United States Donald Trump has claimed that these groups are merely “a small group of people that have very, very serious problems,” in the wake of the Christchurch attack. new Zealand’s Prime Minister disagreed with the American president on this matter however, by simply stating “no,” when asked about whether they agree with Trump’s remarks.
Although Lorde is only two albums into her career, with Pure Heroine and Melodrama being released in 2013 and 2017 respectively, she quickly emerged as one of the top performers from New Zealand and the pop world. These past few years have seen her headline many major festivals including Mexico City’s Corona Capital, and the Nos Primavera Sound Porto Festival, in Porto, Portugal.
Recently Lorde became embroiled in a controversy with Kanye West and Kid Cudi, for their Kids See Ghosts performance at Camp Flog Gnaw in 2018. Lorde accused both artists of stealing her set design for the performance.
“I’m proud of the work I do, and it’s flattering when other artists feel inspired by it, to the extent that they choose to try it on themselves,” she wrote in an Instagram post. She then added, “But don’t steal—not from women or anyone else—not in 2018 or ever.”
Her set designer, Es Devlin, defended the hip hop duo however, stating:
“The idea of a floating glass box, of course, is not in any way new and the geometry precedes all of us,” Devlin shared in an updated Instagram post. “The form finds another layer of resonance in each new context.” She added, “I did not design the recent Kids See Ghosts performance: I worked with Lorde on the design for her Coachella performance: I admire both and see no imitation at work here…”
Photo Credit: Sharon Alagna