NEW YORK—A group of LGBT activists on Sept. 23 interrupted the Metropolitan Opera’s opening night gala to protest Russia’s gay rights record.
Four members of Queer Nation NY unfurled a rainbow flag and urged Russian President Vladimir Putin to stop his “war on Russian gays” just before the start of Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin” as the Associated Press reported. They also targeted soprano Anna Netrebko and conductor Valery Gergiev, who are both Russian, for supporting Putin.
The New York Post reported the protesters delayed the performance for 10 minutes until they left the opera house.
Russia’s LGBT rights record includes a law that bans gay propaganda to minors continues to spark outrage among advocates inside and outside the country. The furor also threatens to overshadow the 2014 Winter Olympics that will take place in Sochi, Russia, in February.
Queer Nation NY members and other LGBT activists gathered outside Lincoln Center before the Met gala to further protest Russia’s gay rights record.