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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Busted in Augsburg (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

gallagher
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Hi Sidewalk-Shufflers,
I know this doesn´t pertain to most; Busking in Germany; but I thought I´d post it here anyway;.. maybe it´ll inspire,... maybe it´ll interest,.... maybe it´ll BORE!!,..
anyway; yesterday, Augsburg, in Southern Germany; we rolled the show out. Straight away, before even starting; the City Officials met us, greeted us; told us "how wellcome street artists are". "There´s just a few `little´ regulations to know about."
After hearing `the fine points´, it was clear; WE WEREN´T WANTED HERE!!! I then took out copies of all the National Juristic Legeslation I had, basically forbidding the controls they just laid down. The City Official smiled and said, "Save your time, we don´t care."

OH!!;.. well!,... that was like drawing the `proverbial line´ in the sand! Naturally we set up and started playing,... PRONTO! The City Officials called the Police. The `men in green´ came,... and THEY did have interest in what info we had! They told the City-Men, they didn´t see a problem! The City-Men said, "We want them removed". The Police HAD to take us away, and the City filed charges against us.

After two hours of Burocratic La-la, we went out,... and played again. Same spot,.. same story,.. different Police.
Two hours later,.. same proceedure, for a third time. This time, they didn´t stop us or hall us away,.. but filed a third set of charges against us.

Interesting; if they had put us in jail; we would have had to see a Judge within 24 hours. With the Legal Decisions that are documented, the City would have looked pretty silly,.. and they knew it. This was/is purly a form of harrassment.

We are orgainizing and consolidating all of our Legal Imformation, and plan to push point again, in the next couple of days, with a camera. We want to force it quickly in front of a Judge,... NO ONE likes staying too long in Augsburg! I´ll keep the story updated.

with crossed fingers,... and gritted teeth,
gallagher
Bill Palmer
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Go to Munich. It's much more busker-friendly along the Stachus.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Chance
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Actually Bill, Munich is one of the most heavily regulated cities in Western Europe. The daily licensing regs there are pretty strict and affect everyone, Europeans included; and they are VERY restrictive towards non-EU performers. Gallagher probably knows this already and stays to the open cities as a result.
Max T. Oz
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Hi Gallagher,

What sort of restrictions were they trying to impose? I've played Germany and have had few problems but then my show is not amped and plays to a smaller crowd 50-100 people. Are you amped and how big is your show?

Cheers,

Max
Bill Palmer
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Quote:
On 2008-06-11 21:45, Chance wrote:
Actually Bill, Munich is one of the most heavily regulated cities in Western Europe. The daily licensing regs there are pretty strict and affect everyone, Europeans included; and they are VERY restrictive towards non-EU performers. Gallagher probably knows this already and stays to the open cities as a result.


Doesn't sound like Augsburg is very open now, does it?
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Chance
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Just to be clear, here are the Munich regs as of 2 years ago:

Permits are given out daily.
The permit desk is just inside the tourist office in the main square.
Permits cost 5 Euros per day.
EVERYONE pays, even EU members.
Permits fees are returned on rain days.
Identification is required, and records are kept on all applicants.
Permits are limited in number: 5 reserved for crate slugs; 5 reserved for musical acts; 5 reserved for circle shows.
ALL acts must move to a new location every hour, or rotate after each show in the case of circle acts sharing the main pitch.
EU members can apply daily; non-EU members can apply JUST 5 DAYS PER YEAR.
**No fire, knives, girraffe (10-12ft) unicycles, or amplification of any kind.**

All regs are strictly enforced until about 7pm by roving permit checkers.

As I mentioned before, these regs are the most restrictive in Western Europe that I've seen.

Please feel free to reply once your snark button is turned off.
Airave
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Wow, that is pretty sad...
I see many performers in Nürnberg
(mostly musicians) and they seem
not to have any problems.

I always thought Augsburg was a real
"cultural" city.

Chance, where did you get that info?
I have been thinking of taking an act
"to the streets" and could use such
resources to avoid problems like
gallagher had to deal with.
Chance
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Hi Greg,

I got the info from being there myself. I based out of Vienna for 7 years, and I've traveled most of Europe until about 2 years ago.
gallagher
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Hi Guys,
Spent today in jail,.. BUT there is light at the end of the tunnel. The City-Man came again today, as we were setting up; called the Police right away; asked the Police to remove us. They did. Sat in a cell all day. They let us out 45 minutes ago, 20:00... without seeing q Judge. Hmmmm,... my strategy, and hopes, laid with speaking in front of a Judge. This didn´t happen.
But the Police did give us a tip; "wait until the charges are pressed, or dropped; from two days ago. If it is in our favor, they CAN´T hall us away again". OK, this is logical,... we´re playing with. It´ll probably take a month or two,... but, we´ll be back.

Augsburg, as many cities, has a few `questionable´ laws. They usually only `remember´ them out though, when there are `questionable´ problems. Because of the high unemployment, a few years ago; the city of Augsburg, as well as a few others; took unemployed/UN-employable(!), gave them a uniform,... and told them to promote `order´ in the streets. You can imagine WHERE a street-artist finds themselves in `The City of Order´. Germany, though, is a Legal-Land. There are laws protecting us. The problem, often, is simply; the un-informed guys in the uniforms. I´ve often wondered, "Maybe the word `uniformed´ is derived from the word `UNINFORMED´!?!, hmmmm,... But,....

As for `funny regulations´; "Playing 75 Meters on either side of the church is forbidden." Naturally the church is in a `cream´ spot,... and I could maybe understand the law,... but the church is CLOSED,... except for Sunday mornings! Cafés and shops ARE OPEN on both sides of the church,....
"Street-Artists must pause, between 12:00 and 15.00",.... shops and cafés may remain open,.... with music!!
"Street-Artists must stop at 18.00.",... shops are allowed open until 20:00,.. cafés,... 22:00,... with music!!!!
,...one other little detail, trucks are allowed to drive on the pedestrian-zone until 12:00,... and they DO,...it´s full!!!!
,...but hey!,...`Street Artist´ are SOOOOO wellcome!

as for Munich, we´ll talk about that paradox another time. BUT, this Augsburg story, is inspiring me to maybe go and fight with the devil,..we´ll see. First dinner,.. tomorrow a small town,... calm the nerves,... then try enjoying the life again.

thanks for the `talk´ guys,
I´ll keep in touch.
gallagher

p.s.: I kind of hate talking about `our show´, because often it tends to `warp´ the perspective of how our thoughts are interpreted,.. and I´m trying to share thoughts here. But I guess it´s time to open up a bit. If you´re interested in `our show´,... http://www.bestimmtverstimmt.de
Airave
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Thank you and much respekt, Chance!
A stop off at the relevant local Rathaus would
surely be in order to get what I would need...

Gallagher, from what I see on your site,
the two of you seem to be a riot! And entertaining!

Do you have a "history" with the Augsburgers??
Or is your act especially controversial?

Hope things go better for you!
gallagher
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It´s raining today,... a little `catch-up´,.... we played a couple of small-no-stress-towns to cool off a bit,... re-center the show; i.e.: practice. Yesterday we received call from an Augsburg Newspaper; someone had written a `letter to the Editor´. They were interested in `our side of the story´, so.... We talked, they listened,.. I´m curious what gets printed!!!

Our plan, is still to wait and see how the Judge re-acts; then return for a friendly visit.

Our experiences in Augsburg have always been positive. We play there, once or twice a year, for a day or two. Nice audiences, no problems. Simply change spots every half hour, no amplification,... don´t block anybodys doors. No problem. In the moment, it is just these amateur marshalls `organizing the world´,... for our own good,... These things have to be stopped EARLY, before they become accepted,... and EXPAND.

Wish you all a rainy day, at the right time!!
gallagher
gallagher
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P.s.: Airave, where are you nesting `in Germany´? Maybe we could cross paths??

Servus,
gallagher
Airave
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Yes, they are setting a very bad precident...

I'm in the Nürnberg area, not so far from Augsberg.
Let me know if you need some to break you out! ;p

I'd also be interested in knowing your itinerary.
Dynamike
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Gallagher, next time those fools attempt to place their hands on you again tell them they will have to answer to Dynamike, The Black Panthers and Obama. Because Dynamike don't play that.
Turk
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Gallagher,

Just showing my naiveté here but what about bringing a civil lawsuit for damages against these clowns (that are openly and deliberately ignoring and violating the German law and your civil rights)? Alternatively, can you take the offense and file a civil lawsuit asking the Courts for an injunction and/or a restraining order against the local officials and the local police?

Might one or two well-placed civil lawsuits "gently" help to persuade these law-breaking civil-rights violating officials? Would not at least some "man bites dog" publicity result and might not the possible adverse publicity and ridicule help tone them down a notch?

As I say, just showing my naiveté
Magic is a vanishing Art.

This must not be Kansas anymore, Toto.

Eschew obfuscation.
gallagher
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Hey Turk, nice idea, but it would cost me money to take them to court. That's why we were hoping they would press charges on us. Or at least give us a fine. If they had done that, we could come in front of a Judge, at their costs.

The story took a nice turn though. The State of Bavaria had state elections in September. Bavaria has the lowest un-enployment in Germany (1.6 %). The highest paid work force. The lowest crime rate. The best schools (according to Pisa). The best streets (according to ADAC). ,... pretty nice place. The ruling party, the CSU, has had an absolute majority, for over 50 years. Before the elections, it was 60 %. One would think, they would be a `shoe in' again.

Two weeks before the elections, four other Street Performers and myself, started playing the streets in southern bavaria; the CSU's stronghold,.. where total "verbot" was enforced. Augsburg, Füssen, Rosenheim, Bad Reichenhall, Bad Tölz, Landsberg, and Garmisch. Everyday, each one of us was stopped. Everyday, we went to the newspapers, told our story, and asked, "How much control is too much control?" (In Füssen, the local newspaper took a survey amongst readers, askings their feelings about Street Performing. 87 % were "for it".)

September 28th, 2008, election day, the CSU lost 17% of their vote. Lost the absolute majority. Lost over 30% of the vote, in their `hot bed', the south. The reason? It's still somewhat unexplained. Lots of folks feel, though, "Enough is enough."

,...hmm, I not saying "We" changed something here. But, I think it does show that Street Performers ARE, at least somewhat appreciated by your everyday folks.

p.s.: the other guys who took it to the streets were; Snakey Dave (Köln), Dave Murphy (Lubeck), Klaus der Geiger (Köln), and Sasa `Strassen Brahms' Poprazen (Ulm).

p.s.s.: You can find newspaper articles, albeit in German, by googling `bestimmt verstimmt'.

gallagher
The Great Zoobini
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Welcome to the busted club. I was arrested in southern Switzerland but there, they have a different method of dealing with buskers. First, they asked me for 175SF. I had it but certainly wasn't going to give it to them. Once they thought I didn't have the money, they put my stuff in jail and pointed to the 3 on the clock. It's recommended to simply first call the police these days as Europe has been suddenly flooded over recent years with those bloody buskers!
Meet you in Busker Alley Smile
Mario Morris
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Gallagher, you are very inspiring. Keep up the good fight and keep on keeping on.
Mario
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