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Dansk Live survey highlights Covid talent drain

Close to 20% Denmark's concert and festival organisers report they have fewer employees than when the pandemic first hit

By James Hanley on 22 Mar 2022

Dansk Live's Esben Marcher

Esben Marcher

A new report by Dansk Live highlights the exodus of backstage talent from the concert industry as a result of the pandemic.

The Danish trade association surveyed the country’s concert and festival organisers during February and March 2022, with 17.2% reporting they have fewer employees today than in 2019.

Dansk Live says a large number of roles have not been re-occupied since the business returned from the coronavirus shutdown, emphasising there is still work to be done to return the domestic sector to full-strength.

The findings are in line with a trend seen across the international live music industry, with a UNESCO study showing that 10 million jobs had been lost across the international cultural industry during Covid-19.

“The consequences of the pandemic are long-lasting”

“Unfortunately, the survey confirms the trend we have also seen with our international colleagues, namely that there are fewer employees in the live industry now than before corona,” says Esben Marcher, head of secretariat at Dansk Live. “The consequences of the pandemic are long-lasting, and this decline is unfortunately a good example of this.”

Last month, Denmark became the first country in the EU to lift all coronavirus measures. But the organisation warned reopening was “not a silver bullet” as promoters still faced major challenges.

Marcher, who has also warned of low confidence among organisers and suppliers and says it will take time for the “natural caution” to disappear, is echoing UNESCO’s calls for political support to aid the industry’s restart.

“It emphasises that there is still a need for the political side to focus on restarting the music and culture sector, so that, among other things, the live industry can get back on its feet after the corona,” he says.


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