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Wednesday , 5 October 2022

Helping live music thrive in Alberta

The Stabilize Live Music Grant is helping hundreds of venues, musicians and other music professionals get back to recording and performing.

Business grants up to $25,000 are now supporting 64 innovative projects at live venues to help Alberta’s music industry adapt and recover during COVID. Individual grants of up to $1,500, totalling $619,000, went directly into the hands of 420 musicians and other live music professionals to help them with live performances or create new sounds in the studio.

Due to high demand for the business innovation stream, the Alberta government added $1 million to the original $2 million allotted for Stabilize Live Music Grant program. To date, the program distributed more than $1.5 million in business grants. As a result, more local venues were able to bounce back, keep people employed and entertaining Albertans.

“Our support is helping the live music sector thrive now and into the future because it is essential to our economic, social and emotional recovery,” Ron Orr, Minister of Culture said in a news release. “Music is an important part of our culture and contributes to Alberta’s economic diversity. Helping live music professionals and businesses with signature live concerts not only promotes local music, it supports tourism and helps communities prosper.”

Alberta’s government collaborates with Alberta Music, which is administering the grant. An independent review panel is evaluating the remaining business grant submissions.

“Alberta Music is happy to work with the Government of Alberta to provide this important funding to Alberta artists and music industry businesses,” Christine Rogerson, interim executive director of Alberta Music said. “Through this program, we funded everything from artistic projects, distanced or virtual events, safe in-person activities, as well as business innovations. The music ecosystem is vital to our social fabric and we are grateful for any opportunities that allow our industry to move towards recovery.”

This $3 million investment is protecting jobs in the music industry by helping venues and music professionals get what they need to recover and grow their businesses. This includes online event bookings, concert promotions, and ticket sales platforms.

NDP response to the government of Alberta’s update on the Stabilize Live Music Grant:

Culture Critic Nicole Goehring issued the following statement in response to the Stabilize Live Music Grant.

“I’m very disappointed to learn that the UCP has failed to deliver the funding intended to help the live event industry. These Alberta businesses were the first to close, and one of the last to still fully open due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is another example of how Albertans can’t trust the UCP,” Goehring said. “This industry has been struggling to stay afloat since the beginning of the pandemic, and have been pivoting their projects, platforms, and services in response with no help from the UCP. The grant itself was flawed at conception, making venues that had been shuttered for over a year access the money through new project-based concepts. It didn’t help spaces with operational costs or retroactive projects from the pandemic, which industry had been specifically asking for.”

“Now, the UCP are playing a shell game with the money intended to help venues and artists, as after almost two years of pandemic response the UCP has not fully distributed all the funds,” Goehring said. “The Minister must stop delaying, and get this help into the hands of the venue operators who desperately need it.”

About Arthur C. Green

Arthur C. Green is an award winning journalist and is from Whitbourne Newfoundland. Green graduated from the CNA Journalism Program. Arthur also studied Business Marketing and Political Science at Memorial University in Essex England and St. John's Newfoundland. Green has worked for such organizations as CBC, CBC Radio, NTV, Saltwire, Great West Media, CKLB Radio, River Radio, Vista Radio, and Postmedia. He also loves Jiggs Dinner and can fillet a Codfish.