Adam Lambert Too Gay To Function In Malaysia

Did you hear the one where Adam Lambert and a male backup dancer walk into Kuala Lumpur? The Pan Malaysian Islamic Party has some reservations about Adam’s performance in the capital on Thursday, specifically that it will be “lewd” and “outrageous” and promote “gay culture.” In response, Adam has agreed that some of the more “lewd and outrageous” aspects of his show will be removed for the Kuala Lumpur crowd. Homosexual activity is illegal in Malaysia; it’s unclear whether Adam could actually be stopped from performing unless he made the requested changes, but it does seem like the Pan Malaysian Islamic Party would like to see that happen. (@aceshowbiz)

Adam has shared his thoughts on the matter via Twitter, and they are pleasingly but unsurprisingly intelligent and on point.

“While I don’t believe that my glamnation tour is in any way offensive I have agreed to make a few minor adjustments out of respect for the Malaysian government. Looking forward to a fun show. Does my show ‘promote the gay lifestyle’? It promotes living ANY lifestyle thatincludes the freedom to seek love and intimacy. Gay, straight, bi, young or old. It’s all inclusive,” he continued. “Plus, what’s THE gay lifestyle? There isn’t just one. There are so many different kinds of gay people. We have a variety of different lifestyles. There’s not only one lifestyle lived by straight folks. Generalizing….”

What Adam doesn’t say is that while it sucks to have to water down a show that represents possibly the height of all homosexual entertainment events with the exception of the Monster Ball, this may be the only chance that some people (homosexually active people, even!) in Malaysia have to go to said homosexual entertainment event. Granted, this does not amount to radical social change, but I for one vote that we choose to view this as a victory for the people rather than a capitulation on Adam’s part. It’s like hiding a file inside a birthday cake, except sneaking sexy gay sexytime music into a country with a lot of institutionalized homophobia via slightly less sexy gay sexytime music. You know? KUALA LUMPUR AUTOSTRADDLERS: go to this show, let us know how it is, which backup dancer/musician he looks like he wants to make out with, etc.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. As someone who has seen this show live, I imagine that Adam will have to do little to “tone it down”–even for a Muslim audience. So, he can avoid kissing Tommy Joe Ratliff (something he didn’t even do in every concert in the US), his dancers can cover a bit of skin…and they’re done with the edits. The show is hardly lewd. It’s not even particularly sexually provocative. It’s just fun–and showcases some amazing singing. Adam and his dancers are sexy just by breathing…and I don’t think any government censors (or TV censors here in the US) are going to be able to stop that– and the audience can still get off ;-)

  2. Sure Adam’s dancers will have put on an extra layer of clothes. Sure Adam may have to skip macking on his bass player Tommy like he did during some midwest festival dates with rows of apple cheeked families in the front. But minus the kiss, I defy you anyone to successfully to rob Adam of his awesome gay, see Exhibit A.

    Plus he sings the shit outta stuff. LOL dayum I love that guy, srsly Kuala Lampurians gay, straight, bi, questioning or Adamsexual are in for A Show no matter what.

  3. Adam Lambert’s show is “For Your Entertainment” and it’s not broadcast to the public so only ticket-holders who want to see Glam Nation are “exposed”. The show itself is more sophisticated and tongue-in-cheek than young Valerie could possibly understand. And showing an old photograph of Adam Lambert reveals more about Vicky than about this fabulous entertainer whose vocals are simply out of this world.

  4. OOpsy, Misspoke. Meant Rachel, not Valerie. BTW–the Hong Kong arena for GNT sold out. Same for New Zealand and the UK. Why not mention that?

  5. @Jillian WTF Autostraddle ADORES Adam, I think you need to take your sense of humor in for a tune up hun.

  6. Loved your article. I am glad that Adam is still going to perform there as he has many fans that love him in Malaysia. They would be very disappointed if he had cancelled the show. He can kiss Tommy at the next concert in NZ and dance provocatively, the fans are expecting it.

  7. I am with Lissy. This is a lovely, light article – thank you! Over-serious, over-defensive Adam fans – I get you, really, but please, please, read and THINK about the damage you do to Adam’s reputation when you, representing Adam as a fan, respond to any article about him. How would HE respond? You just know he would be waaaaay cooler than y’all. So chill, please.

  8. I have yet to buy my tickets for tomorrow night, but hopefully they won’t be able to do anything. Bit late now.

    Not all Malaysians fear the gay. Some of us are really (read extremely) gay (read ‘in love with the ladies’). And Glambert is awesome so… Yeah. I’m hoping I’ll actually be able to go.

  9. PAS, the Islamic party trying to close down Adam’s party does this all the time. It is their job to protest his presence. If they don’t do it, people would question their loyalty to their cause i.e. party poopers of all things fun.

    I totally admire Adam for, well, his morals. What am I learning from this guy? Well, he’s teaching people that if you make an agreement, you stand by that agreement, and I think it’s classy. He agreed to tone down because when in Rome you act like Romans do. He has politely refrained from making angry comments at the people who deserve it. And he’s doing it all in style. Yeah, its a file in a cake and I’m loving it.

    No matter what though, people are going to show up in droves. If you go to the Sony Malaysia site, you’d see fans organizing banner welcome parties (to say hi to our BF at the airport), and there’s this lovely gal organizing everyone to bring blue glowsticks to show our support for Adam (apparently fans started it on AI when they said he was too gay for that show too!). And the organizers are starting a Glam wall too, for fans to get their photos taken.

    I don’t know for sure, but I bet the stores are making big sales in glitter, eyeliner, and all kinds of shiney, sparkly stuff, oh, and leather goods! Well, ok, maybe they’re just getting sales from me. Haha.

    Needless to say, I’m going. To heck with PAS and their rabblerousers. And they better not shut down my concert when they want to. I’ll find someone to sue! Nyah! If anyone wants to find me, I’ll be in the Pitt!

    Now, what exactly is the right amount of leather for this hot weather…?

  10. I’m deeply offended by Adam’s friendly, nice comments, and hope he prances onstage naked and plows several members of the Pan Malaysian Islamic Party so the LGBT rights movement can progress.

  11. PAS have stopped a lot of people from performing, so nobody here’s really surprised.

    “Homosexual activity is illegal in Malaysia”

    Technically, homosexuality is illegal among Muslims in Malaysia. But I just want to point out something – Malaysians, did you know that in some public places, you can get fined for holding hands? And I’m talking about same sex hand holding here.


  12. Hmm, I posted a comment here earlier which seems to have been deleted.

    I just want to apologize if my comment came across as homophobic, what I meant to say was that protective laws in Malaysia are ridiculous.

    And, uh, I also realize I made a typo in the comment which changes the meaning of the sentence a bit.

    • Oh, now I see my comment, and I feel like an idiot.

      What I meant in the first comment – Opposite sex hand holding*.

      Ok, you can ignore my comment spamming now.

  13. I don’t understand what you mean when you describe Adam’s show as “a show that represents possibly the height of all homosexual entertainment events.” The only homosexual “act” in Adam’s show is that he kisses his male bassist one time at some of the shows. That’s it. That is far from making his concert a homosexual event. It’s not even a watered down version of his For Your Entertainment video. It’s just a concert with some great songs and sexy dance moves. I suppose you made that statement “tongue in cheek” but his detractors are just looking for statements like that, to prove their point about Adam’s sinful homosexual ways. ;)

    I’m not surprised Adam is modifying his show. He’s an intelligent, respectful man. He’s said this tour is for his fans who have stood by him during the past year +, to thank them for their dedication and love. He isn’t going to disappoint them because they live in a country with backward, intolerant laws. He’s awesome like that. :)

  14. I watched his concert here in Manila last Sunday. I was actually worried he’d take out the kissing cos this is a “conservative catholic country” Yeah, whatever. HE RULES!!!!!!!! Damn, he’s so sexy!

  15. The wonderful thing about music and celebrities is that they can transcend bigotry and bias. I was born and grew up in Malaysia, left for 15 years to go to college etc, came back two years ago. The government is not the people. The people producing the morning paper are not the people. We know this because young kids still love Adam despite our *ahem* stance against homosexuality, Sodomy 2.0, and all that other stuff that politicians do to try to cling on to power.

    All I can say is, thank god and whatever deities that Adam is coming to Malaysia. Because he is what makes us real. One day I will be able to go shopping with my gf and not worry about how others might stare. One day.

  16. He may not have made out with anyone on stage, tore his clothes off or anything, but it was an amazing concert nonetheless. It’s not like we’re paying to go see him make out with a dude (though I wouldn’t have minded the bonus) so anyway it was amazing.

    Also now I am tired and I sound like a toad.

  17. PAS isn’t really the government – they’re part of the Opposition but do have a stronghold in a couple of states – and like some other people have said, they do this with everybody. But the ruling party isn’t that much better; one woman just came out a couple of days ago saying that ads for sanitary napkins can promote social ills. AUGH.

    (one of many reasons why I left Malaysia!)

Comments are closed.