Man 'hounded out' of performance by sell-out Edinburgh Festival Fringe comedian after Palestinian flag row

Comedian Paul Currie has played sell-out shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

A man has been allegedly “hounded out” of a theatre performance by an Irish comedian who has played sell-out shows at the Edinburgh Fringe after the performer produced a Palestinian flag.

The Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAS) said it had been told by an eyewitness that a man was forced to leave Paul Currie’s Shtoom show at the Soho Theatre at the weekend.

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Towards the end of the performance, Mr Currie is believed to have introduced two props – a Ukrainian flag and a Palestinian Authority flag – and urged everyone to stand and applaud, apparently in support of the causes with which those flags have become associated.

The performance took place at the Soho theatre in London.The performance took place at the Soho theatre in London.
The performance took place at the Soho theatre in London.

He then asked questions of one man, who had not stood up during the applause.

“When we all sat down again, [Mr Currie] looked towards a young man sitting in the second row and said ‘you didn’t stand, why? Didn’t you enjoy my show?’,” said the attendee.

“The young man, who we discovered soon after was Israeli, replied ‘I enjoyed your show until you brought out the Palestinian Authority flag’.”

According to the attendee, the comedian then yelled at the young man “get out of my show’.”

CAS said it then escalated into the audience shouting “get out” and “free Palestine” until the man left.

A spokesperson for CAS said: “What the Jewish audience-members have recounted is atrocious, and we are working with them and our lawyers to ensure that those who instigated and enabled it are held to account. These allegations are of deeply disturbing discriminatory abuse against Jews. Comedians are rightly given broad latitude, but hounding Jews out of theatres is reminiscent of humanity’s darkest days, and must have no place in central London in 2024.”

In a statement, the Soho Theatre said: “We are sorry and saddened by an incident that took place at our venue at the end of a performance of Paul Currie: Shtoom on Saturday, February 10, which has caused upset and hurt to members of audience attending and others.

"We take this very seriously and are looking into the detail of what happened as thoroughly, as sensitively, and as quickly as we can.”



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