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UK gears up for #LetTheMusicPlay round 2

The #LetTheMusicPlay campaign returns tomorrow, sending a message to government that Britain's live music industry is still in crisis

By IQ on 03 Aug 2020

Brixton Academy lit up for #LetTheMusicPlay on 2 July

Brixton Academy lit up for #LetTheMusicPlay on 2 July

A month after round one helped spur the British government into action, the UK music industry will tomorrow (4 August) again unite for #LetTheMusicPlay, spotlighting the plight of live music during the Covid-19 shutdown.

The first #LetTheMusicPlay (LTMP) campaign, which took place on Thursday 2 July, saw thousands of social media profiles – as well as several major music venues – transformed with LTMP branding, with more than 1,500 artists, including the likes of Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa and the Rolling Stones, also lending their support.

Of the campaign’s three main demands – a financial support package, a VAT exemption/reduction on ticket sales, and a timeline for reopening venues without social distancing – only the third remains unfulfilled, with the UK government having announced its £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund, and then slashed VAT to 5%, in the following weeks.

However, even socially distanced – ie mostly financially unviable – indoor shows are off limits for at least another two weeks, and the industry is still reeling from the effects of the coronavirus: an estimated 60% of live music jobs are at risk, and 50% of businesses supplying services to the industry only have liquidity for another four months.

With details of the Culture Recovery Fund, including eligibility for live music businesses, now known, organisers of LTMP are calling on supporters to again take to social media to highlight the difficulties faced by the first-to-close, last-to-reopen concert industry.

“#LetTheMusicPlay aims to highlight that the broader ecosystem of the live music business remains in crisis”

For #LetTheMusicPlay round two, participants are asked to post an end of tour or event crew photo – or a photo of them and their ‘crew’ – with the hashtag #LetTheMusicPlay, from midnight tonight.

A range of pre-made social media graphics are also available to download here.

“Venues and events are still unable to fully open, and so the industry still faces a cliff edge of redundancies,” says Phil Bowdery, chair of the Concert Promoters’ Association.

“The measures that we’ve seen from government over the past few weeks are hugely welcome, but we still need a date to reopen, and a scheme to insure shows so that they can go ahead.

“The second round of #LetTheMusicPlay aims to highlight that the broader ecosystem of the live music business remains in crisis.”


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