Roger Waters’ cancelled Frankfurt concert will go ahead, German court rules

The city’s council had previously argued for the show to be axed, citing the rocker’s alleged “persistent anti-Israel behaviour”.

Roger Waters onstage

Image: Raphael Dias / Getty

A court in Germany has reversed the ban of Roger Waters’ upcoming concert in Frankfurt.

Per reports by German broadcaster DW, a Frankfurt administrative court ruled Monday that the decision by local authorities to cancel Waters’ 28 May show over his supposed antisemitic leanings have infringed upon his free speech rights as an artist.

The court also said that as the owners of concert organiser Messe Frankfurt, the state and city were obliged “to make it possible for Waters to stage the concert” as contractually agreed.

While the court conceded that it may be in “especially poor taste” to allow the former Pink Floyd rocker to perform at Festhalle — a site where more than 3,000 Jews were onced detained and abused before being deported to Nazi concentration camps, it said such a performance would “not be injurious to the human dignity of those people.”

They added that while the musician’s concert borrows symbolism linked to Nazism, the singer did not glorify the National Socialist atrocities or identify with National Socialist racial ideology.

Following the initial ban, Waters’ camp have called the accusations levelled by Frankfurt and Hesse “groundless”, adding that “Roger Waters is looking forward to performing in Frankfurt.”

And just last week, the artist revealed that he’s filed an injunction against the city council and their allegedly “unconstitutional” decision to cancel his appearance, before declaring that he will be “coming anyway” to Frankfurt.


Get the latest news, reviews and features to your inbox.


The world’s leading authority and resource for all things guitar.

Join our mailing list

Sign Up Now

© 2023 is part of NME Networks.