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Details of €50 million pandemic funding for live performance sector announced

The fund was originally announced in the budget last October.

Image: Shutterstock/Kozlik

FIVE MONTHS AFTER announcing the fund as part of the budget, the government has today revealed details of a €50 million suite of measures to support the live entertainment industry during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The measures include a new €25 million Live Performance Support Scheme, support for sole traders and music businesses to pay fixed costs, a capital fund to install recording facilities for live streaming and a new local performance scheme for villages and town centres.

The measures are aimed at supporting producers, promoters, venues and musicians.

The Live Performance Support Scheme aims to assist the continued production of high quality artistic output. It follows on from a pilot version of the scheme last year.

It can offer support to live performances that occur before the end of September and awards will range from €10,000 upwards.

A total of €14 million has also been allocated to assist businesses that have been significantly impacted by Covid-19 that do not qualify for other business supports.

The Music Entertainment Business Assistance Scheme will offer two-levels of flat payments depending on the turnover of the business.

The scheme is expected to open next month and self-employed businesses – whether sole traders, partnerships and incorporated entities operating exclusively within the commercial live entertainment sector – are eligible to apply.

Details of the scheme were announced by Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin.

I want to see the safe return to live music and entertainment as soon as public health restrictions allow.

“The schemes announced today will see the sector supported in the months ahead and return to work, albeit in a limited capacity,” the minister said.

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“The Live Entertainment industry has extensive expertise in developing health and safety protocols and, following two successful test pilot events in 2020, I now intend to establish a consultative stakeholder forum that will help solidify the guidance for reopening and returning to live performance,” she added.

The €5o million funding also included €5 million to local authorities for outdoor live performances, €5 million capital supports for the live entertainment sector and €1 million to the St Patrick’s Festival.

The Live Performance Support Scheme 2021 will be open for applications from 19 March until 14 April. Further information can be found here.

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Ceimin Burke

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