Krystian Zimerman, one of the world’s most well-regarded concert pianists, said he will not return to the United States because of the nation’s military policies and President Barack Obama’s support for a missile shield site in Zimerman’s home country of Poland.
Zimerman made the announcement during a Sunday concert at California’s Walt Disney Concert Hall.
“Get your hands off of my country,” he said, according to the Los Angeles Times. ” He also made reference to the U.S. military detention camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba,” the paper reported.
“About 30 or 40 people in the audience walked out, some shouting obscenities. ‘Yes,’ he answered, ‘some people when they hear the word military start marching.’
“Others remained but booed or yelled for him to shut up and play the piano. But many more cheered. Zimerman responded by saying that America has far finer things to export than the military, and he thanked those who support democracy.”