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Visa Rules Hamstring Foreign Artists, Still

Somehow, there have been nearly four thousand sunrises since September 11, 2001. A child born on 9/11 is now a fifth-grader. Now that we’ve had a moment to reflect on the inexorable and unfeeling passage of time, let’s talk bureaucracy, shall we? Specifically that sort of bureaucracy that is making it tremendously difficult for foreign artists to get American travel visas, which has never been an entirely easy process but has also rarely led to artists having to cancel performances altogether, at least until recently. The Halle orchestra won’t even bother coming to the U.S. any more, and the Halle orchestra’s a hundred and fifty years old, i.e., venerable. Yes, of course, we need to remain vigilant in the face of still-extant global threats, but at the same time, shouldn’t we by now have streamlined the process just a bit? Four thousand sunrises between there and here. (FULL ARTICLE: Larry Rohter, The New York Times)