Protesters disrupt Israel Philharmonic broadcast in London


(JTA) — Anti-Israel protesters disrupted a live BBC broadcast of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra playing in London.

Hecklers in the audience repeatedly shouted during Thursday night’s appearance by the orchestra at London’s Royal Albert Hall.

BBC’s Radio 3 interrupted its broadcast during the heckling and later resumed it, only to suspend the broadcast after more shouting.

The orchestra was participating in the BBC Proms summer classical music festival.

The hecklers were removed by security and jeered by the audience.

Britain’s culture minister, Ed Vaizey, who attended the concert, tweeted: "Demonstrators seem to have turned entire audience pro Israel."

"We regret that as a result of sustained audience disruption within the concert hall which affected the ability to hear the music, tonight’s Israel Philharmonic Orchestra Prom was taken off air," a BBC spokeswoman said, according to The Daily Telegraph.

The spokeswoman noted that the concert was able to continue in the music hall and said that part of the concert would be broadcast on September 7.

The Palestine Solidarity Campaign had called for a boycott of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra . The BBC refused calls to cancel the performance, saying the invitation to perform was "purely musical," according to Britain’s Jewish Chronicle.

Deborah Orr, a columnist for The Guardian newspaper, tweeted: "I’m pro-Palestinian myself. But interrupting a concert? It’s just a good night out for people who like making self-righteous trouble."

The Israel Philharmonic is celebrating its 75th year and musical director Zubin Mehta’s 40th year with the orchestra.

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