After a week in which the Home Secretary Teresa May and the immigration authorities have stood accused of every kind of airport incompetence, here’s a piece of petty bureaucracy to make the blood boil.
The pianist Sunwook Kim, youngest winner of the Leeds International Piano Competition, was booked a year ago to play at the Wimbledon Music Festival, on the tenni-sgreen outskirts of southwest London. This week he was told he couldn’t. Why not? Because Kim is currently studying for an MA in conducting at the Royal Academy of Music and the gig was not included in his visa terms.
Kim offered to play for free. No deal, said the Home Office. Why? Cos we make the rules, don’t argue.
Happily for Wimbledon, the veteran John Lill has stepped into the date. See the website for details.
But I want to hear young Sunwook Kim, and Mrs May won’t let me. What kind of free country is this, anyway? Will they ban Roger Federer next year?