Under pressure, Lancôme opts out, but Ho’s 'freedom' concert goes ahead

The show must go on. Cantopop singer Denise Ho has announced plans for a concert and community event in the spirit of "freedom" this Sunday, to take place at the same place and time as her cancelled Lancôme show.

In a statement on her official Facebook page, the pro-democracy singer invited people to "respond to oppression and fear" in Hong Kong "using music and culture" at the event, titled "The Beauty of We".

According to the statement, the concert aims to “create a happy and safe neighborhood event,” mocking the statement released by Lancôme claiming that the original event’s aim “is to create a happy and relaxing neighborhood event” but it was cancelled due to “possible safety reasons.”

"No politics, no slogan, no banners, no catchphrases, no organisations, or big companies," Ho said.

Ho has collaborated with eight local shops  in an area of Sheung Wan called PoHo for the event, including Just Coffee&Wine Hipster, 3rd Space, HIME and Inbetween Shop, who will help stage unspecified "community activities" on the day.

Lancôme called off the concert after netizens in mainland China threatened to boycott the brand due to Ho's pro-Hong Kong independence stance.

The cosmetics giant and the brand’s parent group L’Oreal have remained silent since the cancellation of the event.

Apple Daily reported that in an internal email circulated among L’Oreal's staff, its president and director general for Hong Kong, Stephen Mosely, will be retiring at the end of June.