Quebec to compensate theatres for 75% of tickets for the 2020-21 season

Quebec to compensate theatres for 75% of tickets for the 2020-21 season
Quebec Culture Minister Natalie Roy and Premier François Legault have announced that the province will spend $50-million to compensate theatres and other live arts producers for 75% of tickets that would’ve been sold for the rest of the 2020-21 season. The exact amount given to each organization will be based on an average of revenue from previous years, and will apply for six months, from October 2020 till the end of March 2021.

“Culture is a priority for our government. Over the past few years, we’ve put out record budgets for culture and will continue to do so. I know it’s tough for artists right now but we have no choice. We need to reduce our social contacts. It’s a question of life or death.”—François Legault

Legault was quick to reassure the arts community and the public that this does not mean that theatres will remain closed through the winter, though he did not guarantee that cultural institutions in red zones would reopen on Oct. 28, and hinted that further restrictions (outside of the arts sector) might be forthcoming. The duration of the compensation period announced today is based on the amount of advance work that goes into creating a season. The funding will be managed by the Conseil des arts de Québec and SODEC.

“Producers will have to ensure us that all the workers involved in productions will be paid — artists, authors, composers, producers, directors and others,” Roy explained.

Roy said that further funding will be announced for film and TV production to ensure that new Quebec movies and shows will be released in the near future. Legault mentioned that cinemas can benefit from the compensation for businesses announced yesterday.

Roy added that the government is also giving $5-million in pandemic relief to 112 museums across the province (not including those that are government-run), as previously announced in June. ■

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