Polish TV show faces backlash after singers in blackface impersonate Beyonce and Kendrick Lamar | Ents & Arts News

A Polish music talent show is facing backlash for featuring contestants in blackface impersonating Kendrick Lamar and Beyonce.

On Saturday, singer Kuba Szmajkowski was named the winner of the second episode of Twoja Twarz Brzmi Znajomo – the Polish version of the global franchise Your Face Sounds Familiar – after performing Lamar‘s track Humble.

Wearing blackface make-up and also sporting cornrows, the singer shared pictures of him getting ready to 163,000 followers on Instagram. During his performance, he also allegedly used the N-word.

Occurs Beyonce‘s If I Were A Boy, fellow contestant Pola Gonciarz also darkened her skin for the performance.

Many social media users have criticized the show and the contestants – calling the use of blackface racist, disgusting and offensive.

“Google ‘blackface’ and learn from your mistake. It’s 2023,” one Instagram user commented on one of Szmajkowski’s posts.

Sky News has chosen not to use images from the show with participants in blackface.

Neither the contestants nor the show, which also featured impersonators of stars including Ed Sheeran and Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, have yet to publicly comment on the criticism.

But after a similar backlash over a contestant appearing in blackface in 2021, producers issued a statement saying the show “attempts to showcase fantastic performances which strive to be as close to the original as possible” and highlighted other tributes to artists including Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder.

It continued: “The intention of each star appearing in the show, as well as the entire production team, is to recreate the original performance in the most accurate way while honoring the original artist.”

Sky News has contacted representatives for both contestants, as well as Endemol Shine Poland, which produces the series, for comment.

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