In the wake of the EU referendum, British live music faces an uncertain future as visa and carnet costs could make playing shows across Europe unsustainable
Europe is closing. “Brexit means Brexit,” reiterates PM Theresa May, buying time until the negotiations for this apparent “hard Brexit” are hammered out. In this political purgatory, businesses are left floundering, unsure about what it will actually mean for them. For British bands touring on the continent, the uncertainty about one of their only certain means of income could not have come at a worse time.
It’s not just bands, agents and tour managers voicing worries about the miasma of ambiguity. Sir John Sorrell, the founder of the Creative Industries Federation, has recently argued that touring acts could be driven off the road due to visa and carnet costs in a post-Brexit Europe. (Carnet is a system governing transportation of equipment across borders without having to complete customs declarations on every item, but they could run up to £2,000 a year.) These will all slash the margins of an artist’s primary source of income. Sorrell said the creative sector is “a key driver of wealth and global success” for the UK. “To imperil that would be to imperil our wider economy.”
This article was originally posted here