Live music industry ‘decimated’ by pandemic with 170,000 jobs at risk

Up to 170,000 jobs are at risk in live music after the closure of venues cost the industry of £3.6billion in revenues.

Artists, including Taylor Swift, Elton John and Michael Buble, have postponed tours due to coronavirus and thousands of venues expect to be shut well into 2021.

Sales will fall 81 per cent this year meaning the industry faces a ‘cliff edge’ when furlough ends on October 31, the report by Media Insight Consulting said.

Cancelled: Performers, including Taylor Swift (pictured), Elton John and Michael Buble, have postponed tours due to coronavirus and thousands of venues expect to be shut well into 2021

Cancelled: Performers, including Taylor Swift (pictured), Elton John and Michael Buble, have postponed tours due to coronavirus and thousands of venues expect to be shut well into 2021

Cancelled: Performers, including Taylor Swift (pictured), Elton John and Michael Buble, have postponed tours due to coronavirus and thousands of venues expect to be shut well into 2021

The researchers said 26,000 permanent roles will be lost by the end of the year without further support. 

In addition 144,000 selfemployed and freelance positions ‘will have effectively ceased to exist by the end of 2020’.

More than three quarters of jobs in the industry were still being supported by furlough at the end of August, the researchers found.

Economist Chris Carey, who coauthored the report, said his research showed the ‘entire ecosystem is being decimated’.

He added: ‘Without ongoing Government investment in protecting this industry, the UK will lose its place as a cultural leader in live entertainment.’

Phil Bowdery, chairman of the Concert Promoters Association, said: ‘We were one of the first sectors to close and we will be one of the last to reopen.’

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