Protestors from the Paris-based women’s rights group FEMEN disrupted Woody Allen’s concert in Germany.

Two topless protestors from women’s rights group FEMEN stormed the stage of Hamburg’s new Elbphilharmonie, home of the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra, on Tuesday, the New York Times reported. The activists disrupted a concert by 81-year-old American film director Woody Allen and his New Orleans Jazz Band, seeking to draw attention to an accusation by Allen’s adopted daughter Dylan Farrow that he had sexually abused her when she was seven years old. The women’s torsos were painted with quotes from a 2014 open letter by Farrow, published by the New York Times, in which she described the alleged abuse.

Dylan Farrow is the adopted daughter of Allen and actor Mia Farrow, whose relationship broke down in 1992 when the accusations surfaced. Allen was never prosecuted and has consistently denied the allegations. The authorities in Connecticut where there family were living in 1992 did not bring any charges, though the prosecutor who oversaw the investigation said publicly that he had probably cause to press charges against Allen but declined, due to the fragility of the “child victim.” Allen married Farrow’s adopted daughter Soon-Yi Previn in 1997.

FEMEN, a group founded in the Ukraine but now based in Paris, seeks to draw attention to women’s rights issues like sex tourism, access to abortion services, and female genital mutilation. The purpose of the protest at the Elbphilharmonie, the group wrote on its Facebook page, was to “remind the world and the Jazzfans sitting in the audience that [Allen] is not just the neurotic and charming director, musician and actor but also seems to like sticking his fingers into his daughters.”

FEMEN activistsActivists from FEMEN. Photo: Facebook.

“Violence against women is not to be ignored, is not tolerable and not excusable, even if the accused is called Woody Allen,” the group said. “FEMEN disapproves of the fact that the Elbphilharmonie offers a pedophile a stage.”

The jazz band began to play again as the protestors were removed from the stage by theatre staff. Allen, who stated in an op-ed in 2014 responding to Farrow’s open letter that that response would be his “final word on this entire matter,” issued a short statement describing the protest as “stupid” according to a report by local news organisation SHZ.


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