By Rachel Clayton
One of the world’s biggest pop stars will Shake It Off at the race that stops the nation — but not all of her fans are pleased.
- Taylor Swift has been locked in by the Victorian Racing Club to perform at the Melbourne Cup on November 5
- VRC chief executive Neil Wilson said Swift was chosen to target a new generation of racegoers
- Swift faced backlash from some fans online who urged her not to participate in the horseracing event
Taylor Swift has been locked in by the Victorian Racing Club to perform at the Melbourne Cup on November 5.
Swift will perform two songs in the Mounting Yard so anyone with a general admission ticket can see her.
It will be her only public appearance in Australia following the release of her seventh album Lover.
VRC chief executive Neil Wilson said he had been considering Swift for a while.
“It’s been in the making for a few months,” he told the ABC.
“We looked at the artists around the world and tried to find the best match for what we do here.”
He said Swift was a strategic choice to target a younger demographic.
“We’re targeting more and more of the next generation coming through.”
Mr Wilson would not allude to how much the global sensation cost to secure, when she was due to land in Melbourne, or who was the club’s second choice if Swift fell through.
“I can’t let on to who we might have had and I can’t comment on the price,” he said.
Swift faces activist backlash online
News of the star’s performance sparked an immediate response from the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses, which protests outside the Melbourne Cup each year.
The animal rights group renewed its online #NupToTheCup campaign, calling on Swift to pull out of the performance.
“Taylor Swift has put money before compassion by agreeing to perform at the 2019 Melbourne Cup,” the group said on its Facebook page.
Some of Swift’s fans also expressed disappointment at the singer’s decision to perform at the race.
Twitter user Yvette Lewis said as much as she loved Swift, she was “disappointed” the star was supporting a “cruel industry”.
Last year, Irish horse The Cliffsofmoher was euthanased after breaking its shoulder during the Melbourne Cup, in what Racing Victoria called “an unfortunate incident that happens infrequently”.