Homeland Insecurity

Over the past week, The Cedar has been forced to take the unprecedented step of canceling two imminent shows by international artists, both due to visa problems. The first artist, Aar Maanta, is a London-based quintet fronted by a young, charismatic Somali singer slated to perform for both a concert performance and two community programs as the centerpiece of this year's Global Roots Festival. The other, an talented ensemble from the Congo, Staff Benda Bilili, whose core members are victims of childhood polio, was to be a co-presentation with the Walker that was to include a special day program for diverse groups of people with disabilities in addition to their evening concert. Losing both of these, needless to say, was hugely disheartening.

Over the past week, The Cedar has been forced to take the unprecedented step of canceling two imminent shows by international artists, both due to visa problems. The first artist, Aar Maanta, is a London-based quintet fronted by a young, charismatic Somali singer slated to perform for both a concert performance and two community programs as the centerpiece of this year's Global Roots Festival. The other, an talented ensemble from the Congo, Staff Benda Bilili, whose core members are victims of childhood polio, was to be a co-presentation with the Walker that was to include a special day program for diverse groups of people with disabilities in addition to their evening concert. Losing both of these, needless to say, was hugely disheartening.

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