Yesterday, some of the biggest names in the live music and events industry have taken to social media to show their support for the We Make Events campaign, which is lobbying government for urgent financial support in light of the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The likes of Radiohead, Noel Gallagher, Nadine Shah and many others have tweeted their support for the campaign, which was yesterday (September 30) holding a day of action raise awareness of the live industry’s plight. A variety of socially-distanced gatherings are taking place across the globe, highlighting the precarious state of the sector, while thousands of international venues will be illuminated in red as part of the initiative.
Launched earlier this year by trade organisation PLASA, #WeMakeEvents has become an independent entity run by a collective of industry trade bodies, including PLASA, businesses and freelancers. It held its first day of action on August 11, when over 715 event venues and buildings across the UK were lit up in red to signal the urgency of the situation. In London, a boat illuminated in red travelled along the Thames, passing the Royal Festival Hall, the London Eye, the National Theatre and the Tate, which were all lit in red.
The live events business is a major contributor to the economy, with the creative sector generating more than £100 million every year. According to a 2019 UK Music report, the UK music industry contributed £5.2 billion to the UK economy in 2018, with the live music sector contributing £1.1 billion. The industry was also found to employ almost 200,000 people in the same year.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year, the live events market has been devastated, with thousands of jobs affected following the cancellation of all gigs, festivals, theatre productions and trade shows. Touring crew, engineers and production staff – many of which are freelancers – have been without work for more than six months, with no sign of events returning until summer 2021 at the earliest. Numerous venues have also been forced to close, while artists and performers have had to cancel all tours and live appearances until further notice.
Without sufficient financial support from the government, the industry may be impacted to the point that it is unable to recover to its pre-pandemic heights. For more information on how to get involved with We Make Events and make the industry’s voice heard, visit https://www.wemakeevents.com.
SOURCE: Audio Media International
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