US seeks to deport orchestral violinist

US seeks to deport orchestral violinist


norman lebrecht

September 17, 2020

Time is running out for Angelica Pereira, a member of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, who’s from Colombia.

Read here.




  • Sharon says:

    I hate to say it but in this anti immigrant era she probably needs to marry (and to prove that it’s legit live with) an American citizen which nowadays can be male or female

  • Sharon says:

    Addendum: A wonderful film that just came out on Netflix about some of the issues involved in “green card” marriage
    is “Lingua Franca”. I urge people to see it more than once. What is not said openly about the emotional issues involved is more important than what is said directly.

  • William Safford says:

    I hope she can hold out legally in the U.S. until President Biden takes the oath of office in January.

    That will not immediately solve her dilemma, but at least reforms will begin to be implemented soon thereafter, that should go in her favor.

  • Dave says:

    Good Lord! I feel sorry for this poor woman, caught up in all this red tape BS.

  • violafan says:

    Wow, this makes it much clearer the immigration process is beyond corrupt. How come Melania Trump, a no name model with hardly any accolades, was able to obtain one of these coveted EB-1 visas back in 2001?

    • Karl says:

      She was hardly a no name. NYT article from a couple of years ago even admits she got in based on the rules:

      “Did Melania Trump Merit an ‘Einstein Visa’? Probably, Immigration Lawyers Say
      Mrs. Trump, then Melania Knauss, appeared on the cover of British GQ in 2000, the year she petitioned for the EB-1, and was featured in Sports Illustrated and other magazines later that year.”

      • V. Lind says:

        Einstein…yeah, the connection’s obvious.

        I fail to see how appearing on the cover of British GQ should qualify anyone for an American green card.

      • violafan says:

        Appearing on the cover of a magazine qualifies you for an Einstein Visa? She was not at the top of her field by any means.

        This young lady Angelica sounds MUCH more qualified and accomplished.

    • William Safford says:

      And Melania created an anchor baby and engaged in chain migration….

  • Mick the Knife says:

    At first, my feeling was “how awful”. Then, I began to wonder if she could take her skills back to Columbia and make it an even greater country. There are legal means to do what she wants to do in the US but she didn’t meet those standards. Music would make a better career for US citizens if foreign students were allowed to study here but not allowed to work here after their studies. Does it sound barbaric? I first heard it from a member of an orchestra in another country than my own 30 years ago who said “we want you to come and teach us, not take our jobs”. He had a point.

    • Another Colombian. says:

      A valid point, but it’s not that simple.

      National protectionism seems like a good and popular idea, but jobs should be given to merits and skills and not be judged by nationality or any other criteria not related to the job. As I see it, a lot of times this positions taken by foreigners are the ones that none of the nationals would want anyway, so in the end that protectionism takes both the community and the foreigners to nothing.

      I agree that it would be very good for Colombia if she goes back, but this decisions must be taken when the person considers it’s mature enough and the time has come to give back what she earned while being away.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      Yours is a mature and enlightened approach; not a lot of that doing the rounds these days when bleeding hearts and hand-wringing remain the order of the day.

    • Luigi Nonono says:

      It is true, so many talented people shun the hard work of making things better at home, and simply flee, assuming they can be accommodated elsewhere, which is not the case. It is too hard for Americans to get work abroad to keep taking in foreigners here. And the German who got hired by the University of Indiana didn’t last two years there as a teacher.

    • William Safford says:

      She can’t go to Columbia to stay. She’s being deported from all of the U.S., not just Oklahoma.

      On a more serious note, your idea of her bringing her music skills back to Colombia fits in the category of “given lemons, make lemonade.”

      Besides, the major reason why she didn’t meet the “standards” here, is because the criteria are continually being changed to make both visitation and immigration increasingly difficult and bureaucratic.

      This is on purpose. The current administration *wants* to send people from “s…hole” (to quote the orange enemy of the people) and other undesirable countries home. If this violinist were from, say, Norway (again to quote the orange enemy of the people), I bet she would have a green card right now.

      This dynamic predates the current administration, but has been weaponized under the current xenophobic one.

      Also note that she is caught in a Catch-22 situation: she has been ordered to leave the country and return home, but there literally is no means of travel to her home country due to COVID-19. She could be arrested for not doing what she physically cannot do.

  • Michael says:

    When one of the big US orchestras wants to hire a foreigner, they seem to be able to do so. Maybe it is a question of money, or having the right connections, or both. Maybe the OCS wants her out, or maybe she made enemies with people that can cause her harm? Who knows what really happened. It is too bad for her. This sort of thing doesn’t only happen in the USA.

  • Garech de Brun says:

    I am so glad I do not have to live in the of Trump.

  • Greg Bottini says:

    Vote the criminals out!
    (And I’m talking to you, too, Great Britain!)

  • Simpson says:

    She was poorly advised, unfortunately. She probably doesn’t qualify for the immigration category mentioned in the article, but there is another immigration category which she definitely qualifies for. The immigration service can’t switch categories in the application, it only adjudicates the one a person applied for. We live in the time of terrible anti-immigration hysteria, but bureaucracy functions in a certain way and if you feed it the right papers, there still is a good chance it will work.