# Let The Music Play
Kilimanjaro Live, along with countless others involved in the live music industry, are taking today to mark the start of the #LetTheMusicPlay campaign.
Our aim is to raise awareness of the plight of the live music industry in the UK as a result of the lockdown measures brought in to control the spread of Coronavirus in the UK.
The day of action will begin with a letter being sent to the Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, which has been signed by thousands of representatives of the industry from Managers, Agents, Promoters, Production Crew and including hundreds of artists, such as Ed Sheeran, Coldplay, Muse, Dua Lipa, Eric Clapton, Foals, Genesis, Lewis Capaldi, Liam Gallagher, Radiohead, Queens of the Stone Age, Mumford and Sons, Sir Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones and so many more.
We aim to raise awareness of the contribution and importance of the live music industry and to urge the government to support the industry in returning to form.
If you want to support the campaign then please get invovled on social media #LetTheMusicPlay
We are asking the Government provide;
- A clear conditional timeline for reopeningvenues without social distancing.
- An immediate comprehensive business and employment supportpackage
- and access to finance and Full VAT exemptionon ticket sales.
In case you didn’t know:
- The core live music industry stands to lose at least £900 million if it remains closed for the rest of 2020.
- An estimated 30-50% of the live music industry’s workforce are facing unemployment, leading to a catastrophic loss of skills.
- The UK is home to the most popular arenas in the world yet they are set to lose five million visitors due to COVID-19.
- Music festivals support 85,000 jobs, but with the entire summer cancelled, many are currently facing collapse with 59% redundancies expected across the sector without further support
- 90% of grassroots music venues are under threat of closure. We are supporting the Music Venue Trust’s calls for a £50 million cash injection to ensure vital parts of the music industry do not go out of business.
- The core live music industry generates £1.1 billion to the economy and impacts other parts of the economy including tourism to the tune of £4.5 billion.
- According to Media Insight Consulting the live music industry and spend associated with events added £4.5bn to the economy in 2019 and supported 210,000 jobs across the country.
- Musicians earn an average income of £23k, well below the national average. This is under further threat due to the cancellation of live music as performances represent significant sources of income for musicians, composers and songwriters.
- Live music needs VAT relief on future ticket sales. It would save the live music industry up to £300 million each year and hugely help in its recovery.
- Music plays an important role to the economy. UK concert-goers spend almost double on live music events than those in France and Italy combined.
- The UK live music industry is the second biggest in the world but is at risk of falling behind. Following COVID-19 the German government has provided €150 million to its live music industry.
- The UK is host to the world’s biggest and most famous greenfield festival – Glastonbury and the world’s most successful ticketed venue – The O2. Every year almost 30 million music fans attend thousands of festivals, arenas, concert halls and grassroots venues.
- Live music events have a profound impact on local economies – Glastonbury generates £100m a year for local businesses and charities. Ed Sheeran’s 2019 gigs at Chantry Park generated £9m for the Ipswich economy.
- The Government’s Job Retention Scheme has provided short term relief to the many live music businesses and employees yet plans to wind down the scheme risk putting livelihoods at risk without further support.
- If the UK Government does not provide timely and well-targeted support to the music sector, the industry will lose core physical infrastructure, as well as musical talent technical sills, which will be impossible to replace, even if the industry is able to return to economic viability post-Covid-19.
A copy of the letter sent to Oliver Dowden
Dear Secretary of State,
UK live music has been one of the UK’s biggest social, cultural, and economic successes of the past decade. From world-famous festivals to ground-breaking concerts, the live music industry showcases, supports, and develops some of the best talent in the world – on and off-stage.
As important as it is, our national and regional contribution isn’t purely cultural. Our economic impact is also significant, with live music adding £4.5bn to the British economy and supporting 210,000 jobs across the country in 2019.
Like every part of the entertainment industry, live music has been proud to play our part in the national effort to reduce the spread of Coronavirus and keep people safe. But, with no end to social distancing in sight or financial support from government yet agreed, the future for concerts and festivals and the hundreds of thousands of people who work in them looks bleak.
This sector doesn’t want to ask for government help. The promoters, festival organisers, and other employers want to be self-sufficient, as they were before lockdown. But, until these businesses can operate again, which is likely to be 2021 at the earliest, government support will be crucial to prevent mass insolvencies, and the end of this great world-leading industry.
Government has addressed two important British pastimes – football and pubs