Utah’s arts and leisure industries misplaced $76 million in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
That’s the findings from the 2020 State of Utah Tradition Report, completed by the Utah Cultural Alliance. The report additionally discovered that the business misplaced 23,000 jobs.
The surviving arts and cultural companies mentioned they need assistance from two teams of individuals: the federal government and the general public.
Subsequent month will mark a yr since The State Room in downtown Salt Lake Metropolis closed. Its home windows are nonetheless lined in posters of acts that by no means bought an opportunity to carry out again in March of final yr.
Co-owner Darin Piccoli mentioned they might open The State Room and their different venues at restricted capability, however that would not make them cash, and so they do not wish to danger spreading the virus.
“We stored our full employees on till August with some PPP cash, the primary spherical. However , actually, at that time we did not have a lot for them to do,” Piccoli mentioned.
To get by, he mentioned they public sale off signed posters, promote merchandise, and apply for each grant they will.
I assume what I might need folks and the federal government to listen to is that we do want your help,” he mentioned.
The manager director of The Utah Cultural Alliance, Crystal Younger-Otterstrom, mentioned arts and leisure makes up greater than 4% of Utah’s financial system, however the pandemic has impacted that. Ticket, admission, and gallery gross sales are down throughout the state. She mentioned philanthropic donations are additionally down, as many individuals have turned their consideration to serving to different areas of want within the pandemic.
“We all know that arts and leisure deeply affect our state’s financial system, and that is essential and a giant a part of why we carry worth to the state of Utah,” Younger-Otterstrom mentioned. “However greater than that, arts and tradition transfer us, they educate us, they entertain us, they encourage us, they expose us to new concepts and new ideas.”
She mentioned many theaters and museums have turned to supply digital choices, which may stick round after the pandemic, however the business is at the moment bleeding cash, and lifting dwell occasion restrictions is not the reply to all their issues.
“They’re nonetheless sitting on over $17 million of ticket rollover liabilities,” Younger-Otterstrom mentioned.
Venues have already misplaced tens of millions from pre-sold tickets in 2019 and 2020 that had been later postponed or canceled, and that $17 million is just counting 66 companies surveyed in Utah, she mentioned.
“That is only a tiny phase of what that quantity in all probability actually is,” she mentioned.
She mentioned if you’re sitting on tickets that you just bought previously, take into account donating them again to the enterprise.
One other manner to assist is to take a look at nowplayingutah.com, a state-wide calendar of issues to do in particular person or on-line. Occasions vary from digital swing dance lessons and snowshoe excursions, to workshops, reveals, and reveals.
Holding artwork and leisure alive in Utah may also take assist from the legislature, Piccoli mentioned.
“The Utah dwell occasions grant that they put out on the finish of final yr was nice, nevertheless it was woefully underfunded. I imply, we missed out on it,” mentioned Piccoli. “The course of the appliance took us quarter-hour, and the funds had been exhausted by then.”
He mentioned these funds had been first come, first served and did not scratch the floor in serving to lots of of companies in want.
To assist shut some gaps, The Utah Cultural Alliance is requesting a $6 million ongoing improve to the humanities and museum sustainability grant.
Additionally, Senate Bill 202 was simply launched in entrance of the Legislature. That could be a $30 million grant program that will assist small companies impacted by COVID-19, together with arts tradition, and leisure venues.
We’re our personal business, the dwell occasions, and it is essential to not neglect about us,” Piccoli mentioned.
He mentioned he hopes that by April or Could they’ll be capable of begin car parking zone reveals at a few of their venues. He mentioned hopefully by late summer time there might be extra alternatives to remain protected however take pleasure in dwell leisure collectively.