The Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) has commented on media reports that the Government is working on a plan to reopen theatres
Commenting on the Government’s plans to reopen venues, the Incorporated Society of Musicians’ Chief Executive, Deborah Annetts, said:
‘It is encouraging to hear that the government has responded to the ISM’s relentless campaigning by announcing its intention to safely reopen theatres and other live performance venues without social distancing from 1st November. Many of our members are in despair, having had no work since March, and this news is therefore a welcome step for ensuring that venues can make a sustainable income and for freelance musicians to start earning a living through live performance.
‘However, unlike other industries, the reopening of venues and live performances cannot happen overnight. In fact planning for the Christmas shows, often the most profitable time of year, began much earlier in the year and many venues have already announced their cancellation. While concerts typically take less time to prepare, this should still be a key consideration for the government. That is precisely why we need a tailored financial support scheme for freelancers, who are the lifeblood of the performing arts, until venues can fully reopen. We urge the government to work with the ISM and other industry leaders so that we can make this proposal a success and see a return to incredible experiences for audiences, and prevent the devastation of our world leading sector.’