Relations between Argentina and the rest of the world worsened today following the nationalisation of a popular stage musical.
Argentina was left isolated yesterday when president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner announced the nationalisation of Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales (YPF), the multi-billion pound energy company.
Spanish energy group Repsol had 51 per cent shareholding in YPF and
Madrid responded with a trade and diplomatic offensive against Buenos Aires, calling on EU allies to back Spain's position.
But the crisis deepened today after President Kirchner announced she was also nationalising the smash hit Tim Rice/Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Evita!
The show, which tells the story of former first lady, Eva Peron, who is almost a saint to many Argentines, is always being performed somewhere in the world and was a hit movie for Madonna. Annual income from the show is thought to be in the billions.
Now Argentina plans to recover all royalties and fees from every performance anywhere in the world, and is actively seeking retrospective payments through international courts.
"Old Lloyd Webber's going to miss that bit of bunce," said theatre expert Tommy Prance.