Who can save the cultural industries during the coronavirus pandemic?
Written by Eliska Kacerova on 20 avril 2020
ll around Europe, many institutions have had to close their doors due to the spread of coronavirus. One domain has taken the biggest hit: the cultural sector.
For the past month, places like theatres, cinemas and many others have had their normal means of raising revenue taken away. It is likely that they will have to remain closed until at least the summer. Several civil initiatives have popped up to try and support the creative industries during this time. But will individual donations be enough to save these cultural institutions?
One of the biggest initiatives in the Czech republic has been launched by Prague city hall and GoOut, a cultural service provider and online ticketing portal. It is called Tickets for Nothing. In just two weeks, it has managed to raise 60 000 € and counting. The COO of GoOut, Lukáš Jandač was on the line:
“If we look at the numbers right now, 1.5 million czech crowns (60.000 € N.D.L.R.) is not a lot. If the theatres are closed for three months or even maybe more, it’s nothing. So this is really rather symbolic movement, it is also a moral support. We are also helping these cultural institutions to be even more visible, because that’s what they need right now.“
It’s clear that the state will have to play the biggest role in subsidising the arts. In the Czech republic, 68 millions euros have been granted towards cultural institutions. In France, 22 millions euros were released as an urgent grant. But even then, cultural representatives in both countries argue that these amounts don’t go far enough in helping to fill the holes left in their revenue by the pandemic.