Lily Allen has been called “tasteless and disrespectful” by Christian groups after recreating a nativity scene on stage.
The singer, who played to a sold-out O2 Academy in Brixton over the weekend, appeared on stage as the Virgin Mary dressed in a slinky blue party dress.
The self-styled “Sheezus” rollicked on a bed of hay while accompanied by backing dancers dressed as a Christmas cracker, a gift and a donkey as part of her nativity parody.
But the 29-year-old has been criticised for being “offensive” to Christian groups.
Conservative MP Martin Vickers said: “This could be extremely offensive to many Christians. It is important that all religions are given the respect they deserve and I can certainly understand why some Christians believe their deeply held views are being squeezed out.”
Stephen Green from campaign group Christian Voice told the Sunday Express: “It is tasteless, it is disrespectful and it is crass.”
The singer’s fans, however, were delighted by the nativity set, with many tweeting to congratulate the singer on her performance in south London.
@lilyallen the nativity was genius— GYPSY (@Sean_Gallen24) December 13, 2014
So @lilyallen's entrance as the Baby Sheezus, in a manger, part of a full-on nativity scene, was one of the best things I've seen in a while— Dan Wardle (@danwardle) December 12, 2014
@lilyallen starting a gig lying in a crib surrounded by a full nativity scene. Incredible scenes.— Vicky Stephens (@vickystephens) December 12, 2014
Allen was accused of racism last year after featuring twerking black dancers in her comeback video for “Hard Out Here”.
She defended her music video as “light hearted and satirical”, adding that people were “wrong” to assume she only requested black backing dancers for the twerking scene.
In pictures: Lily Allen vs the World
In pictures: Lily Allen vs the World
1/6 Lily Allen vs Katy Perry
This all kicked off when Perry described herself as a ‘fatter version of Amy Winehouse and the skinnier version of Lily Allen’. Justifiably, Allen retaliated on Capital FM, slamming Perry’s song lyrics as ‘crass’ and criticising her for not writing her own music.
2/6 Lily Allen vs Cheryl Cole
Allen tweeted that ’40 per cent of Girls Aloud will have been charged with assault’ after Sarah Harding was involved in a row with her boyfriend. Allen was of course alluding to Cole’s conviction for assaulting a club toilet attendant in 2003. Cole kept hushed on the matter but unfollowed Allen shortly afterwards – subtle.
3/6 Lily Allen vs Fearne Cotton
Cotton accused Allen of snubbing her at the Brit Awards 2014, telling Radio 1’s Nick Grimshaw that she had been “blanked five times in a row and looked through like a pane of glass”. But Allen was having none of that, taking to Twitter to refute Cotton’s claims: ‘I did not blank you, that is simply not true, I didn’t see you or your husband.’
4/6 Lily Allen vs Katie Hopkins
Hopkins slagged Allen off for having a famous father and putting on weight when pregnant. Cue the ‘Not Fair’ singer snapping back: ‘Yes, after tragically losing a child so late into my pregnancy I may have gained a few pounds, I am one of many that find comfort in food. I wasn’t exercising next time because I didn’t want to take any risks and, funnily enough, the survival of my children felt more important than being thin.” You tell her, Lily.
5/6 Lily Allen vs Perez Hilton
These two have a long history of Twitter spats stretching right back to 2009 when the singer called the blogger a “parasite” and “cheap-ass wh**e”. Later, Hilton posted a photo of Allen with the caption ‘Lily Allen + motherhood = bad idea’. Since then Allen has called him a “woman-hating retard’ and an ‘evil b*****d’.
6/6 Lily Allen vs Courtney Love
Allen posted an unflattering photo of Love on Twitter, sparking the latter to embark on a rampage of equally unideal pictures! Love’s rant included such descriptions of Allen as ‘ugly as hell’, ‘baby brat nonsense’ and an ‘insanely deluded irrelevant friendless child’.
“If anyone thinks for a second that I requested specific ethnicities for the video, they’re wrong,” she wrote on Twitter.
“If I could dance like the ladies can, it would have been my arse on your screens; I actually rehearsed for two weeks trying to perfect my twerk but failed miserable.”