Covid lockdown: Why performing artists get more sympathy from me than bar owners – Helen Martin

With performing events shut down, writers, actors, singers, dancers, musicians, magicians, comedians, and many more artists are considered non-viable for government support.

By Helen Martin
Sunday, 25th October 2020, 4:45 pm
It would be a terrible loss if many entertainers are forced to take other jobs (Picture: Lisa Ferguson)
It would be a terrible loss if many entertainers are forced to take other jobs (Picture: Lisa Ferguson)

Now that’s something Rishi Sunak should definitely be trying to deal with. They’re not registered as self-employed, every piece of freelance work is temporary but now they are in total shutdown when it comes to theatres, concerts etc.

They are not all regular TV performers and who knows when full audiences can return and open up their work again?

Apparently, if they need income, they are expected to find another job.

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I imagine there are many other people, apart from performing artists, who are in that same situation, having established their own one-man or one-woman freelance career, who possibly provided technical services, stage jobs, or hired out equipment, or their talent for things such as dinners, public gatherings or events, and who now with the shutdown have no idea when they can earn more money.

When Covid-19 is over, or when vaccines are circulated, when travel is restored, when tourism takes off again, theatres open up, and everyone is desperate to enjoy events and productions, they might reclaim their career, or we might be short of performers and others in the entertainment world.

It would be a terrible loss for us, and for those who may have spent years at music, drama and dance training, and building up valuable experience.

I care about, but feel a little less sorry, for owners of bars and restaurants and devoted chefs who also celebrate their talent, but are supported by the government and are focussed on opening up again as soon as possible.

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