- Transcript reveals confusion over ferry evacuation in South Korea
- Militants kill 14 Algerian soldiers in ambush
- Unbeliebable: White House turns Bieber petition response into immigration screed
- Obama signs law denying Iran ambassador’s visa, but says law is ‘advisory’
- Mich. judge to laughing convicted killer: ‘I hope you die in prison’
- Man charged in Kansas City-area highway shootings
- Keystone XL pipeline still on hold after State Dept. decision
- Fla. man charged with killing 16-month-old son to play Xbox undisturbed
- Drones from the deep: Pentagon develops ocean-floor attack robots
- Michigan mayor slaps back atheists’ try to erect ‘reason station’ at city hall
Elton John dedicates Beijing concert to dissident Ai
BEIJING — Elton John publicly dedicated his only concert in Beijing to Chinese artist and political critic Ai Weiwei, sending a murmur of shock through an audience accustomed to tight censorship of entertainment.
Minutes into a more than two-hour show Sunday night, Mr. John told the audience that the performance was dedicated “to the spirit and talent of Ai Weiwei,” according to several audience members. They said the crowd rumbled in recognition that Mr. Ai remains a touchy subject for the Chinese government.
An internationally acclaimed sculptor and installation artist, Mr. Ai has used his art and his renown to draw attention to social injustice. He was detained for nearly three months last year, and he remains barred from leaving China.
Mr. Ai and Mr. John met each other briefly on Sunday before the concert. “I super like him,” Mr. Ai said on his feed on Twitter, which is banned in China but on which he has 180,000 followers.
China-based online media sites reported on Mr. John’s Beijing show, as they did on a Friday night performance in Shanghai, but they did not report Mr. John’s remark about Mr. Ai.
The Chinese government exercises tight control of live performances, requiring artists to submit detailed lists of songs, casts and crew members before approval is given. Censors further tightened scrutiny after singer Bjork shouted “Tibet, Tibet” at the close of a song titled “Declare Independence” at a Shanghai performance in 2008.
TWT Video Picks
Women losing coverage under Obamacare, too
- Scalia to students on high taxes: At a certain point, 'perhaps you should revolt'
- Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him
- Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels casualties of 'hard combat'
- Feds approve powdered alcohol; 'Palcohol' available later this year
- EDITORIAL: Mark Warner running scared?
- CHARLES: Holder's undermining of the law deserving of contempt
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- Justice at last: 'Evil woman' outed for grabbing girl's game ball
- 'Deport Bieber' petition draws no comment from White House
- Critics rail against liberal bias for commencement speakers
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.