Admin | 12 Oct 2020 14:38pm
Theatre Companies receiving a share of Arts Rescue Package announced
...but how many amateur companies have benefitted?Report Content
The UK Government has announced a plethora of UK-based arts companies that are to receive a share of its £1.57bn Rescue Package for the Arts (Culture Recovery Fund).
However, we’re not sure how many (if any) amateur theatre companies are in the list.
Speaking at the Old Vic in Bristol, Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, reeled off a long list of professional recipients – admittedly people whose livelihoods may depend on the funding for survival. However, it does seem that the amateur sector really are mere hobbyists as Sardines has yet to hear about any theatre societies, companies or charities that have been included in the swathe of Government grants.
There are plenty of amateur venues that are in financial peril, just like their professional counterparts, but it looks like the advice is to ‘sit tight’ if ‘theatre’ isn’t your career.
Here’s a few of the institutions who WILL be getting some of the essential funding (1,385 in England alone are to share £257m of Government money). Not all of the following are ‘theatre’ but they’re all ‘professional’:
- Beamish Living Museum of the North – Co Durham £970,000
- Birmingham Royal Ballet – £500,000
- Bristol Old Vic Theatre – £610,466
- Cavern Club, Liverpool – £525,000
- Chickenshed – £106,303
- Curve, Leicester – £950,000
- Exeter Northcott Theatre, Exeter – £183,399
- Finborough Theatre, London – £59,574
- Grimm & Co, Rotherham, Yorkshire – £86,000
- Hackney Empire, London – £585,064
- Hallé Concerts Society, Manchester – £740,000
- Lighthouse, Poole – £987,964
- London Symphony Orchestra – £846,000
- National Maritime Museum Cornwall, Falmouth – £485,000
- PW Productions, London – £245,000
- Royal Academy of Dance, London – £606,366
- Royal Liverpool Philharmonic – £748,000
- Storyhouse, Chester, Cheshire – £730,252
- Theatre by the Lake, Keswick, Lake District – £878,492
- Theatre Peckham, London – £150,000
- Turbine Theatre, London – £90,000
- Wigmore Hall, London – £1,000,000
- Wiltshire Creative- £446,968
- Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield £804,013
- Young Vic, London – £961,455
Not surprisingly, the happy recipients are all extremely grateful. Here are some highlights:
Chris Stafford and Nikolai Foster said, “COVID continues to have a devastating impact on our industry and we are indebted to Arts Council England and DCMS for the Culture Recovery grant which will help secure a future for Curve. Curve would not have survived this period of closure without the funding grants from Arts Council England and Leicester City Council, along with the support from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). As the CJRS comes to an end, this crucial investment in our theatre will enable us to protect jobs, forge plans to reopen and employ 100s of freelancers.
“We will shortly announce our reopening plans, and although socially distanced performances are not sustainable in the long-term, our theatre plays a vital role in the life of our city and on our local economy; this investment will enable us to bring our building – and Leicester’s Cultural Quarter -back to life as we wait for news on when we can expect to reopen at Stage 5 of the Theatre roadmap.”
Jo Hemmant and Yamin Choudhury said, “Hackney Empire is very grateful to Arts Council England and The DCMS to have received this funding, and thereby have the opportunity to continue to do our best to support our community, our audiences, our young people and ALL of the people that make arts and culture happen. The challenges of the future remain, in many ways, unknown. We feel it is our responsibility as a sector, now more than ever, to ensure that we are always learning, always improving and always working harder to represent and reach out to the unheard and the unengaged. With this funding we must guarantee that the transformative power of the arts can be experienced by the many; to share, to entertain, to inform and to educate.”
Artistic Director Jez Bond said, “We are delighted and relieved to receive the Cultural Recovery Grant of £250,000 from the government. The very essence of theatre is gathering people together in the same room for a live, shared experience – and the economics of venues at our scale, mean that it’s not financially viable to produce shows with social distancing in place. This money, however, will enable us to prepare our building so it’s ‘Covid-secure’, and subsidise us to present smaller scale work over the next few months before we can reopen fully. It also allows us to offer the space for the development of diverse, new work – enabling us in turn to support freelance practitioners who – in the majority of cases – have tragically slipped through the net in terms any support packages. We thank the Arts Council and the Government for this grant and for recognising the importance of the role we play in our community.”
Louise Perry, Chickenshed’s Managing Director said: “Chickenshed is over the moon to receive this funding from the Culture Recovery Fund. It will help us to keep our doors wide open, so that we can continue to shine a light on the wonderful creativity of our community.”
Artistic Director Kennedy Bloomer said, “We’re incredibly grateful and immensely overjoyed to be receiving the funding. The Hope Theatre will be able to continue as a venue and create opportunities for artists and we couldn’t be more thrilled.”
A spokesperson said: “We are delighted and relieved that the Bush Theatre was successful in its application to the Culture Recovery Fund, which is a vital support for us over the next six months. On behalf of staff and trustees, we want to thank Arts Council England, DCMS, and those individuals who have worked hard to deliver this fund. With this support, we can keep our doors open for the community of Shepherd’s Bush and move towards once again producing live theatre.
“However, we also want to acknowledge that this remains a difficult time for everyone, including the extraordinary, diverse talent that makes our industry so special – and the freelance community who are in particular need of support.
“50% of audiences to our shows are first-time visitors and we look forward to introducing even more new audiences to the best new playwrights. These connections between artists and audiences are fundamental to building strong and resilient communities that can weather this crisis.”
Brian Hook and Louis Hartshorn said, “This was an urgently required shot in the arm for HHE in our fightback to our stages . Whilst we are grateful recipients of the CRF we are aware that we are the lucky few and we feel the responsibility on us and others to be torchbearers, pathfinders and with a profound humility to the taxpayer.
“Every penny of this support will help sustain the Immersive Great Gatsby and the Immersive|LDN programme, employing hundreds of freelancers and the wider economies that these productions support. We are confident that this investment in HHE will pay dividends back to those taxpayers both in cultural output and direct economic return.”
GRIMM & CO
Chair of Trustees, Sarah Dunwell, said, “This year has been a challenging year for all of us, especially for those working in the hospitality or arts sector. Grimm & Co, as an arts charity, has suffered greatly from reduced funds, oscillating plans to react and respond, whilst continuing to deliver provision to the communities of Yorkshire. Today’s news will mean we can focus on what we do best and support the children and young people we work with.”
Deborah Bullivant, Founding Chief Executive said, “Securing this fund means our survival is safeguarded over the dark, winter months ahead. This means we can plan ahead, we can re-engage our wonderful freelance artists, our team is secure. We are so excited that we will now be able to deliver an enchanting programme of activities, in so many safe and exciting ways, to reach those communities where we can make the greatest difference. We are absolutely delighted and very relieved at this news today.”
Artistic Directors Glen Neath and David Rosenberg said, “We are thrilled and thankful to have received funding from the Culture Recovery Fund today. It means we can continue to employ our small group of brilliant staff, continue to make work for the home whilst the pandemic curtails our location-based work and means we will be ready to return when restrictions end.”
David Hutchinson, CEO: “We are delighted and very grateful to receive support from the Government’s Cultural Recovery Fund. The last 7 months have been nothing short of devastating, both for our company and our industry as a whole. We have lost 8 productions, as well as many of our team members, as we have tried to sustain a business with zero income. This financial lifeline allows us time to reimagine and restructure the business, so that we can be ready and able to help bring our sector back to life post Covid-19. There is a long way to go, but this grant gives our company a fighting chance of recovery. In turn, we fully intend to do everything that we can to support our venue partners, fellow organisations and all of fantastic professionals who work in our industry, so that can all move forward in our joint journey towards getting the arts back in business.”
Paul Taylor Mills, Artistic Director, The Turbine Theatre said: “The events of the last year have been life-changing for those working within the theatre industry. At The Turbine Theatre we’ve tried to be as resilient as we can be but the challenges of the last 7 months have been unfathomable. Over this time we’ve continued to entertain audiences through our outdoor festival, we’ve employed a variety of freelancers to work on our shows and still programmed emerging talent. Furthermore, we’ve raised over £60,000 through our #FundForFreelancers support fund.
“The support from the Cultural Recovery Fund will allow us to retain staff, continue to promote new musicals / artists and ensure we’re able to hit the ground running for when we’re finally able to open our doors. I’m desperate that this will be sooner rather than later.
“Theatre remains an important part of so many people’s lives and not just the people who work within the industry. Its value to the economy and indeed the health and wellbeing of those that call this great country home should never be underestimated. I’m honoured that we’ve been chosen as one of the organisations trusted to get us back to a vibrant and meaningful future for the arts.”
Peter Wilson, Chief Executive and Chair of PWP, said: “These are worrying times for all the performing arts. So we at PWP are grateful that the needs of the commercial producing companies have been recognised alongside those of the subsidised sector. Our hibernating productions of THE WOMAN IN BLACK and AN INSPECTOR CALLS, alongside our future productions with partners throughout the UK, have been protected by this very welcome act of sensible generosity.”
While we’re very happy for the professional companies that have successfully received a grant, if your AMATEUR company has applied for and received either positive or negative news then please let us know by emailing us HERE