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Live Performance Australia slams NSW Government’s lack of support for cultural sector in crisis during Coronavirus crisis

Live Performance Australia slams NSW Government’s lack of support for cultural sector in crisis during Coronavirus crisis
May 5, 2020

In the wake of yesterday’s announcement that Sydney’s Carriageworks is entering administration, Live Performance Australia has accused the NSW Government of being “missing in action” for the cultural sector during the Coronavirus crisis.

Advising that the NSW Government needs to take urgent action to stop the destruction of the state’s cultural sector due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Live Performance Australia (LPA) Chief Executive, Evelyn Richardson today advised “our largest state has been missing in action so far in the battle to protect our cultural sector from the devastation being wreaked by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The distressing announcement that Australia’s largest multi-arts centre, Carriageworks, has been placed in voluntary administration is terrible news for the artists and performers who have been supported by its leadership role in Australia’s cultural life.

“(NSW) Premier Gladys Berejiklian needs to step up both as leader of NSW and as the Minister responsible for the arts to help Carriageworks continue in its role as one of our leading cultural venues.

“When cultural ministers from all of our state and territory governments met in late March, we set out very clearly for them the potential devastation of our cultural sector because of COVID-19’s impact on venues and cultural spaces.*

“Some of our state governments have put in place targeted measures to support our cultural industries, but the response so far from both NSW and the Commonwealth has been woeful.

“Sadly, the announcement that Carriageworks is in voluntary administration is likely to be the first of many as our performing arts companies grapple with the severe financial impact of COVID-19 on their revenues.

“Our world-class cultural industry was the first to be shutdown by COVID-19 and will be one of the last to recover, although for all the talk from the Federal Government of helping people across the bridge to the other side of the pandemic, we see precious little evidence of that support for our cultural sector.”

Noting that the plight of Carriageworks highlighted the very significant danger to performing arts centres and cultural venues around the country, Richardson added “our people, our companies, and our physical venues and cultural spaces are all under threat.

"These venues are major employers and contributors to our economic and social well being. Our governments have a responsibility to protect our cultural assets and must step forward to save and support them as a matter of urgency.”

Image: Sydney's Carriageworks (top, Alamy Stock Photo) and the 2019 Sydney Contemporary at the Carriageworks (below, courtesy of Carriageworks/Zan Wimberley).

Related Articles

4th May 2020 - Event cancellations sees Sydney’s Carriageworks calling in of administrators

29th April 2020 - JobKeeper improvements needed to sustain Queensland Arts Sector

26th April 2020 - Arts groups call for Federal Government action over Coronavirus hit to industry

26th April 2020 - Queensland and West Australian Governments announce easing of Coronavirus restrictions

21st April 2020 - Arts and sport set to be impacted by Virgin Australia’s administration

16th April 2020 - ABS survey shows ‘arts and recreation’ businesses as being hardest hit by Coronavirus pandemic

16th April 2020 - Coronavirus hit arts industry needs $750 million rescue package

10th April 2020 - NSW Arts Minister resigns after Coronavirus lockdown breach

9th April 2020 - Australian Government commits $27 million relief package for the arts

9th April 2020 - LPA welcomes additional arts support but highlights much more is needed

30th March 2020 - City of Sydney to consider expanded financial relief for cultural and creative sectors

20th March 2020 - LPA concerned over Government’s inaction in helping cultural sector survive Coronavirus crisis

20th March 2020 - Arts Ministers meeting fails to deliver support package as Australia faces ‘devastating cultural recession’

19th March 2020 - Queensland Arts to receive $8 million in funding relief through COVID-19 crisis

17th March 2020 - Australian Arts and Cultural Organisations respond to Coronavirus

2nd March 2020 - Australia Council releases resource to ‘future-proof’ arts organisations

7th January 2020 - Carriageworks launch immersive and participatory large-scale art installations

15th November 2019 - NSW Government approves funding for redevelopment of Walsh Bay arts precinct

28th May 2019 - Carriageworks names Blair French as new Chief Executive

8th December 2018 - Carriageworks announce New Public Artwork commissioned for South Eveleigh

20th November 2018 - Carriageworks unveils its most ambitious visual arts project

13th November 2018 - Carriageworks commences search for new Director


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