Citing a “family emergency,” Katy Perry has dropped out of tonight’s annual Singles’ Day launch event sponsored by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba. The event, officially called the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival Gala, kicks off the country’s biggest online shopping day of the year and is taking place in the city of Shenzhen.
Event organizers confirmed the singer’s exit early on Thursday. “Alibaba and all her fans in China are naturally very disappointed,” Alibaba reps said in a statement. “We would like to send Katy our best wishes at this difficult time, and hope that we can see her in China soon.”
Perry was billed as the “global ambassador” at the event and was to appear alongside OneRepublic and retired NBA star Kobe Bryant, as well as popular Chinese girl band SNH48. Retired soccer player David Beckham — who brought along his wife, Victoria — has taken her place as “ambassador.”
Singles’ Day is the equivalent of Cyber Monday in the U.S., and brought in a staggering $14.3 billion in sales last year — a 60 percent jump from 2014.
“Regretfully, I must cancel my appearance on the Alibaba Double 11 due to a family emergency. I am very sorry to disappoint my fans and look forward to seeing you in China soon,” Perry wrote on her verified account on the Chinese social site Weibo.
Perry has not commented on the cancelation via her highly followed (94 million) Twitter feed. Instead, the pop star and outspoken Hillary Clinton supporter has spent the last 30 hours venting her frustration surrounding the U.S. election results, tweeting “We are not a nation that will let HATE lead us,” among other things. Late Wednesday, she referenced the protests going on in large cities including New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) November 10, 2016