It was very interesting to hear recently from tenor and previous Barnabas speaker Allan Clayton (H 91-99), who discussed the struggle musicians are currently facing due to Brexit in an article by “The Art Desk” .
Allan is established as one of the most exciting and sought after singers of his generation. He gained huge praise as the lead role in Brett Dean’s Hamlet, which had its world premiere at Glyndebourne in June 2017. This performance gained rave reviews and saw Allan win several prizes and accolades, including the 2018 Whatsonstage Award for Outstanding Achievement in Opera. Allan also sang the role of David in Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Summer 2018 saw Allan return to Glyndebourne to perform Handel’s Saul, yet again receiving huge praise and commendation. As Barnabas speaker here at King’s, Allan was incredibly inspiring spending the day meeting pupils across all three King’s School sites and working in particular with many of our current musicians.
In the recent news story, Allan discussed, alongside three other singers, the current issues musicians are facing. Music has always been offered visa free, but as the repercussions of Brexit are felt in the UK, musicians are now facing an increasingly vulnerable position as artists. As things stand with Brexit, to allow artists to fulfil their contracts as before, artists must negotiate 26 different sets of rules for each EU country, bringing large visa bills and extensive administration.
Allan shared: “I have no idea how this contract will affect my EU work for the rest of the year. As well as concerts in Austria and Germany over the summer, I am due to perform at the Komische Oper in Berlin this autumn. I will need to go through a similar process in applying for a visa, but have been warned that if it is denied for any reason, I won’t receive any compensation.”
It is a very interesting read, addressing important issues and questions currently affecting many working in the arts sector. To read the full article, click here.