A new (European) small step toward getting instruments on planes

Slipped Disc reports:

A new small step to getting instruments on planes

February 10, 2014 by  

The European Parliament has voted to oblige airlines to allow musicians to carry small instruments on board and larger ones in the hold. The proposal has to be approved by the European Council before it acquires force of law, and I cannot see budget airlines like Ryanair allowing it to happen without hidden penalties. Or stop bucket shops like the Iberia subsidiary from forcing the Voce quartet  to remove instruments from their cases.

Full article here


The elephant in the room


The ever watchful Norman Lebrecht (Follow him on FB:Facebook and on Twitter@NLebrecht) of Slipped Disc has found more bad news for musicians wanting to enter the USA:

A federal regulation on ivory imports came into force on February 25. It applies to ivory used in musical instruments.
Worked African elephant ivory imported as part of a musical instrument will continue to be allowed provided the worked ivory was legally acquired prior to February 26, 1976; the worked elephant ivory has not subsequently been transferred from one person to another person in pursuit of financial gain or profit; and the item is accompanied by a valid CITES musical instrument passport.
What this means is that every string player who has a small piece of ivory in their bow will need to get a passport for each instrument and bow. Every time you buy a new bow, you will need to register it and pay a $75 fee.

Read more…

An airline for musicians to avoid at all costs

Veuling, the Spanish budget airline, forced two violinists in a string quartet to carry their instruments unprotected on board, or face a steep financial penalty. They were quite rude about it.

This now appears to be the airline’s policy. Violinist David Peralta booked an Iberia flight from Amsterdam to Barcelona and found his ticket assigned to Vueling. Iberia, apparently, is a part-owner of this shaky company.


Norman Lebrecht has more to say here on Slipped Disc

A previous report on this airline

The world sends us garbage… We send back music – the children of Cateura and their “Garbage Instruments” – Los Reciclados

Mozart played on oil drums!

Just outside the Paraguayan capital of Asuncion sits Cateura, a massive landfill that receives 1,500 tons of new rubbish each day. The dumping site’s surrounding neighborhoods are home to several thousand families who make a living by sorting through its rotting waste, and separate out whatever can be sold to the local recycling industry. According to UNICEF, Cateura is a community marked by extreme poverty, illiteracy, and pollution.

It’s also home to an orchestra—one made up of local children whose instruments are made entirely from recycled garbage.

This is an article in TakePart amplifying my earlier post on Cateura’s collaboration with Berta Rojas.

It’s an intriguing story of a musician, Favio Chávez, who got together with a rubbish collector, Nicolás Gómez, to make instruments together using packing cases, oil drums and old bottles.