UK Theatre and SOLT collaborate with the Creative Industries Federation and Oxford Economics on new report

UK Theatre and SOLT collaborate with the Creative Industries Federation and Oxford Economics on new impact of COVID report

Published: 17 June 2020

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UK Theatre and SOLT have contributed resources and data (from member surveys on the impact of COVID-19 on theatre) to this new report that finds that over 400,000 creative jobs could be lost, with the UK creative industries projected to lose £1.4 billion a week in revenue in 2020.

  • Theatre is projected to lose £3 billion in revenue (61%) and 26% of permanent jobs (12,000), although this estimate only takes into account current cancellations and does not account for the reluctance of audiences to return to venues (only 20% would return on opening night according to a survey by Indigo).
  • Further research from UK Theatre/SOLT shows that, without further intervention, job losses in theatre across permanent and freelance roles is likely to number over 200,000 (over 70%).

Julian Bird, Chief Executive, UK Theatre and Society of London Theatre (SOLT), said:

“The UK’s theatre industry plays a key economic, social and place-making role. Theatre and the performing arts make a powerful contribution to our society and to our diverse national identity. They make areas richer culturally and financially, and they make places more attractive to live and work. UK Theatre is a global success with our productions filling cultural venues from Broadway to Beijing. However, the impact of COVID-19 on the theatre industry has been immediate and devastating; with every UK venue now closed. COVID-19 has removed the sector’s trading income entirely at a stroke and thrown its business model into crisis. In order to rescue the performing arts sector, we call on government to: sustain the workforce; catalyse the recovery; and review insurance and liability policies to ensure this valuable asset is protected and enhanced for the future. We hope this report goes some way to helping this happen.”

The report, released today, follows the Creative Industries Federation’s open letter to government in April calling for urgent funding for the creative sector, which UK Theatre and SOLT, alongside over 500 leading figures from the creative industries and beyond, signed.

The Projected Economic Impact of COVID-19 on the Creative Industries was commissioned by the Creative Industries Federation, in collaboration with UK Theatre, SOLT and other creative industries bodies. 

Date Published: 17 June 2020
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