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Busking in Edinburgh
19 mar 2009Bennett
7 jul 2009|- jsmwnyc
7 jul 2009|  \ ijuggle42
8 jul 2009|     |- jsmwnyc
8 jul 2009|     \ charliejuggler
8 jul 2009|        |- jsmwnyc
8 jul 2009|        |  \ Little Paul
8 jul 2009|        |     \ jsmwnyc
9 jul 2009|        |        |- Colin E.
10 jul 2009|        |        |  \ jsmwnyc
9 jul 2009|        |        \ n8rae
10 jul 2009|        |           \ jsmwnyc
10 jul 2009|        |- Alan Mackenzie
10 jul 2009|        |- ian smith
10 aug 2015|        |- missjessiepie74@gma…
23 mar 2016|        \ rachaelreid16@gmail…

Subject: Re: Busking in Edinburgh
Author: jsmwnyc
Date: 7 jul 2009

Bennett wrote:
> Anybody know if it's alright to just find a spot on the street and busk in
> Edinburgh, Scotland, or do you need a license?
> Also, (bonus) any restrictions on how long you can perform for or where?
> Thanks!!!

Edinburgh is fighting for their rights to perform with Fringe.

Forum at Performers.net:

My Post:

(Posted on FACEBOOK: Edinburgh Street Performers)

To Whom It May Concern,

My name is Josh Weiner, and I am a New York City street performer since
1990. In 1998 I visited
Edinburgh and stayed after the EJC Festival for one week. I performed
behind St. Giles Cathedral, and
the local performers were quite kind and respectful.

I would perform at times when a large group of regular acts were in queue
for the afternoon. There
was a Drum Group, a man who Stacked Dice & had a man walk on him lying on
a bed of nails. There
were dancers. Musicians. A comedian. Lindsay the rope walker/violinist was
also there.

All the performers were courteous and allowed me a fair share for the
entire week. It was an oral
agreement, with a handshake. I was, and still am, quite poor, and they
allowed a visitor from the USA
to work without fee or local harassment. I looked quite asian and young
perhaps a runaway teenager,
and there were no moments of unwelcome confrontation.

So, thanks to you, the Edinburgh performers.

I returned to the USA, and still work the street, legal in parks, even
subways without permit, protected
by the US Constitution Bill of Rights.

I also perform with two organizations: The South Street Seaport and MUNY
(Subway Performers).

The Seaport in NYC did start a $500 per performer annual request that was
stopped due to protest
and local petition (Signed by dozens of performers, professionals, local
and even Civil Liberties
Lawyers and local Union organizers like Local 802) and negotiation several
years ago. Buskers are
non-union, not on official payroll, and sign a hold harmless agreement to
work in designated
organized locations. But business certainly changed since 9/11/2001.
Many stores closed, many left the city.

I have since organized a festival, in 2005 in post 9/11 NYC. It took many
hours of calls and
paperwork, but the festival was granted sponsorship by LOMA and a banquet
was held, which was a
thank you and small stipends for all performers, and then down to business
for all the downtown tour
groups and stores in the area involved in their business networks.
Although I felt "out of the loop" of
the large business deals, I was genuinely thankful for the hands given to
poor struggling artists and
working class performers simply surviving with the skills and crafts they
still possessed.


The past years have been a erosion of our Busking Rights. The Season is
shorter, and the business
deals with a River-To-River music festival, or beer tent, are completely
marginalizing and
overshadowing pure Busking. Each year I send a petition for an annual
festival and it is not
considered. The property is struggling to remain in business. Our
"Busker's Hall of Fame" has left he
property. Our hours are regularly, locations on the property are blocked
due to special events and
several performers were not welcomed back onto the roster.

I was also arrested later in 2005 working with the proper MUNY permit and
held in jail for 48 hours.


I continue in good faith.

I am financially ruined and facing housing court to keep my apartment
(flat). I am thankful for the
smaller hats, and simply facing the reality of basic needs.

Peaceful Days & Safe Travels. I hope reading this is helpful. I hope you
win. Organize!

Both Seaport and MUNY have paid organizers who designate location and
times. There is also an
audition process. No performer accepted in the program pays a fee to work.
We get no salary, we are
not on payroll. We are a tax write off of some sort.

Sincerely, Josh Weiner, Performer 1977-2009. NYC Busker 1990-present.
Josh Weiner
Juggling & Related Circus Arts
2005 Busker's Hall of Fame
The South Street Seaport NYC
CCNY Math Ed. and Jewish Studies 2007
Just say no to drugs

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