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British visa problems for artists

Desert Dancer 20 Oct 11 - 12:05 PM
John MacKenzie 20 Oct 11 - 12:23 PM
GUEST,Jack Campin 20 Oct 11 - 01:58 PM
GUEST,.DUH 20 Oct 11 - 07:54 PM
nickp 21 Oct 11 - 04:15 AM
nickp 21 Oct 11 - 04:16 AM
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Subject: British visa problems for artists
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 20 Oct 11 - 12:05 PM

For Artists and Performers, Britain Puts Out an Unwelcome Mat (New York Times)

"Britain is turning away countless non-European writers, artists and performers at its borders, a result of cumbersome and unevenly interpreted immigration rules that are making it increasingly difficult for many arts organizations to include foreigners in their programs.

"The system, intended to limit the influx of foreigners at a time of economic and security tensions, seems straightforward enough on paper. While some artists qualify for "temporary worker" status, the rules are intended to ensure that those who make brief visits for exhibitions, festivals, readings and the like do not earn money or try to remain in the country. But they have proved so onerous and so open to subjective misreading that even people who have been coming to Britain for years are suddenly being refused entry. "

"Recent victims of the system include the Russian-born, New York-residing beat poet Alex Galper, who was turned away when he planned to read for no fee at a charity event; the Georgian artist Gela Patashuri, who was commissioned to produce a work for a London gallery but whose visa was denied because the authorities said they were "not satisfied" with his qualifications; and the renowned Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami, who canceled plans to direct "Così Fan Tutte" at the English National Opera after his visa was granted and then withdrawn, and he was told to re-apply and to give his fingerprints again.

Britain is not the only Western country with tough borders. The United States has a notoriously arduous visa application system that has led to numerous well-publicized cases of artists and performers being refused entry.

"But in Europe, Britain stands out for the strictness of its policies and the apparent inconsistencies in the way it enforces them."
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Much more at the link.

It looks to me like the usual suspects are posting their UK tours at Mudcat. Anyone here having trouble?

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: British visa problems for artists
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 20 Oct 11 - 12:23 PM

You want to try it the other way. Getting into the USA to perform, is notoriously difficult!
It's bad enough running the gauntlett of US immigration when you're just arriving for a family visit.


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Subject: RE: British visa problems for artists
From: GUEST,Jack Campin
Date: 20 Oct 11 - 01:58 PM

The NYT did point out that US is appalling as well.

The UK system is perhaps more vicious in that artists often get turned away on entry, with nothing to warn them that there might be a problem. Wasted journeys like that, with all the expenses that have been incurred up-front, can be ruinously expensive.


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Subject: RE: British visa problems for artists
From: GUEST,.DUH
Date: 20 Oct 11 - 07:54 PM

TOURSIST Visa - (Artists are just too honest).


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Subject: RE: British visa problems for artists
From: nickp
Date: 21 Oct 11 - 04:15 AM

As I understand it, two different things here - visas are visas, what performers need are to be 'sponsored' (this has replaced the old work permit system). The article touches on it but seems determined it's the visa that is at fault.


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Subject: RE: British visa problems for artists
From: nickp
Date: 21 Oct 11 - 04:16 AM

It goes without saying that this isn't necessarily fair or well managed.


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