SXSW Immigration Policy Upsets Performers
South By Southwest (SXSW) the incredibly popular music festival has found itself at the center of some controversy. At issue is a provision in their contract for performers. The language implies they can turn performers who do unauthorized shows in to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials if they want to. The performers could then be deported. When organizers work with international musicians, they work with them to secure any visas they may need.
Told Slant Responded by Canceling SXSW Show
Felix Walworth from Told Slant, a band based in Brooklyn, posted part of the contract on his Twitter page. According to him, the contract reads:
“If SXSW determines, in its sole discretion, that Artist or its representatives have acted in ways that adversely affect the viability of Artist’s official SXSW showcase, the following actions are available:
○ Artist will be removed from their official SXSW showcase and, at SXSW’s sole option, replaced.
○ Any hotels booked via SXSW Housing will be canceled.
○ Artist’s credentials will be canceled.
○ SXSW will notify the appropriate U.S. immigration authorities of the above actions.“
Walworth said, “After looking through this contract sent to me by SXSW I have decided to cancel Told Slant’s performance at the festival. I’m not interested in aligning myself with an institution that interacts with immigration authorities as a means of controlling where art is shared and performed, and who makes money off of it.” The tweet was shared hundreds of times within a few hours.
SXSW Responds to the Controversy
Roland Swenson, CEO and co-founder of SXSW issued a statement about the controversy.
“Language governing SXSW’s ability to protect a showcase has been in the artist Performance Agreement for many years. It is, and always was intended to be, a safeguard to provide SXSW with a means to respond to an act that does something truly egregious, such as disobeying our rules about pyrotechnics on stage, starting a brawl in a club, or causing serious safety issues.”
In addition to the cancellation of the Told Slant show, the Downtown Boys’ Victoria Ruiz has started a petition to take that clause out of the contract.
More in Entertainment
Kris Jenner Considers Being Surrogate For Daughter Kim Kardashian
Kris Jenner, the matriarch of the infamous Kardashian brood, told daughter Kim Kardashian that she would be open to being a...May 24, 2017
Bella Hadid ‘Flirting’ With Boxing Champ Anthony Joshua
American supermodel Bella Hadid and current Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua are reported to be interested in each other after people from...May 24, 2017
‘Justice League’ Director Steps Down in Light of Family Tragedy
“Justice League” director Zack Snyder announced he will no longer be part of the film’s production following a family tragedy: his 20-year-old...May 24, 2017
John Oliver Calls Donald Trump’s Russia Scandal ‘Stupid Watergate’
It took John Oliver almost ten minutes to take his first breath during “Last Week Tonight” on Sunday after attempting to...May 23, 2017
Prince Harry Drives 100 Miles to Bring Meghan Markle to Pippa’s Wedding
Prince Harry may have attended the wedding ceremony of royal sister-in-law Pippa Middleton with his brother Prince William but the red-haired...May 22, 2017
‘Twin Peaks’ Co-Creator Talks About the Advantages of Censor-Free Cable
“Twin Peaks” co-creator Mark Frost spoke about the “liberating amount of freedom” that Showtime granted him and his writing partner, David...May 21, 2017
Jennifer Lawrence Unapologetic Over Racy Strip Club Video
Radar Online posted a video Wednesday morning of Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence drunk in a club, pole dancing, and taking her...May 20, 2017
Tom Hardy to Play Venom in ‘Spider-Man’ Spin-Off
Tom Hardy is set to star as the titular villain in “Venom.” Ruben Fleisher, best known for his work on “Zombieland”,...May 20, 2017