May Banishes Spears References From Queen Musical
Queen guitarist Brian May has ordered references to Britney Spears be removed from hit musical WE WILL ROCK YOU out of respect for the troubled star. The 60-year-old musician insisted the character of "Britney" in the show be renamed. Gang members in the play - based on the music of Queen - are named after 20th century icons, with the character formerly known as Spears now taking the moniker of Spice Girl Victoria Beckham. And May admits he made the decision to remove Spears references from the show because he felt sorry for the star. He says, "We have taken out references to her in deference to the fact she is going through such a hard time. The references have always been intended as good-natured fun and even a kind of tribute to her. But we didn't want there to be any risk of the show adding to her pain. "We are very sensitive to the feelings of our fellow artists. We never feel comfortable with anything other than a non-destructive, affectionate gag." Spears was placed on psychiatric evaluation at a Los Angeles hospital last month (Jan08) - the latest episode in the star's well-publicised meltdown. May adds, "We send our love to Britney. We would like to see her back up there, in private and in public - pure spun gold."