The 64-year-old rocker says that after facing red-tapism in the visa authorities, he had to seek governmental help, in a recent interview
The World Of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) festival has been bringing some of the finest artistes from around the globe to the UK for almost 25 years now, and has built a solid reputation for presenting an eclectic mix of performing arts for fans. But recently, in a interview to a music magazine, its founder, musician Peter Gabriel admitted that it is becoming increasingly difficult for him to obtain visas for international artistes.
“It’s really hard at the moment to function in the same way as we did… we had (renowned singer/percussionist) Youssou N’Dour, who was almost the Senegalese president, and we still couldn’t get visas for his band when he was headlining our WOMAD Festival this year. So I had to write to government ministers and get help. It’s increasingly difficult for world music and world artists. If you’re a great musician, a great composer, it shouldn’t matter where you’re born, or what language you’re singing or what instruments you’re playing.”
The annual international arts festival is held during the summer at Charlton Park, Wiltshire over four days. This year, it took place on July 23-26. The venue houses five to six stages along with a fair, kids’ arena and other activity zones.
WOMAD has also expanded to other countries and next year, it will host editions in New Zealand, Australia and Spain.
(All Images Courtesy: WOMAD Charlton Park Festival (official) Facebook)