Sunday, July 21, 2024

Musicians ‘failed by government’ over EU touring, stars say

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Other names on the open letter include Ed Sheeran, Sir Simon Rattle, Sting, Radiohead, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, Kim Wilde, Roger Daltrey, Glastonbury organisers Michael and Emily Eavis, and Judith Weir, Master of the Queen’s Music.

The letter was organised by the Incorporated Society of Musicians and the Liberal Democrats, and published in The Times, external.

“The reality is that British musicians, dancers, actors and their support staff have been shamefully failed by their government,” it said.

“The deal done with the EU has a gaping hole where the promised free movement for musicians should be. Everyone on a European music tour will now need costly work permits for many countries they visit and a mountain of paperwork for their equipment.”

The extra costs will “tip many performers over the edge”, it claimed.

“We call on the government to urgently do what it said it would do and negotiate paperwork-free travel in Europe for British artists and their equipment,” it added.

“For the sake of British fans wanting to see European performers in the UK and British venues wishing to host them, the deal should be reciprocal.”

The Who frontman Daltrey signed despite telling the BBC Radio 4’s Front Row programme in 2018: “It’s nothing that can’t be solved. I mean, we used to work in Europe before the EU was even thought about. We had the golden period of the 60s and the 70s.”

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