Discrimination against artists for their religious affiliation is intended to take a personal toll on the individuals livelihood. Enrique Ugarte, Spanish composer and conductor, conveyed his experiences with discrimination in Germany. Ugarte has conducted some of the top orchestras in Europe, including the Basque National Orchestra and the English Chamber Orchestra, and is also the holder of the European championship for accordion playing. He currently lives in Germany, where he has also performed in the countrys finest opera houses.
According to a complaint filed with the United Nations and several human rights organizations, a German music company suddenly terminated Ugartes appointment to a prestigious musical directorship solely because of his privately held religious beliefs.
The German company, C&P Gruppe of Stuttgart, had prepared a contract to secure Ugartes role in a planned international Opera Circus. The show was to continue for two years, representing a $1 million contract for Ugarte.
During the contractual proceedings, I mentioned to the head of the organizing company, Mr. Conzelmann from C&P, that I am a member of the Church of Scientology. He then told me that he cannot employ me on that basis, Ugarte stated in an open letter he sent to art organizations.
Artists Take Stand on Religious Persecution in Germany continued...
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