The Associates: EAA, FAC, Iceland Music
Covid-19 has impacted every business sector around the world, but with live entertainment likely to be one of the last industries to return, given social distancing regulations, the associations that represent its millions of employees have never been more important.
As restrictions in many countries enter yet another month, for issue 91 IQ found out more about some of our association partners and discovered just what they are doing to help their members navigate and survive.
Following the last instalment with the BPI, CLMA and Dansk Live, this time we check in with the European Arenas Association, the UK’s Featured Artists Coalition and Iceland Music.
European Arenas Association
Representing 33 arenas across 20 countries, the aim of the European Arenas Association (EAA) is to provide consistency, support, best practice and networking opportunities for its members, to allow and encourage them to share experiences and common ground. Membership usually costs €4,000 per year.
The arena industry has been hit particularly hard in the pandemic, so support for the EEA membership during these challenging times has included:
- Surveys to establish the different protocols and procedures followed in the initial stages of the outbreak
- Discussion platforms to allow all members to have direct contact with each other and share concerns/questions
- Cancellation of 2020 membership fees to alleviate financial pressure
- Lobbying the EU via the EU sub-group network
The EAA cancelled its 2020 membership fees to alleviate financial pressure
Featured Artists Coalition (UK)
The Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) is the UK trade body representing the specific rights and interests of music artists. It is a not-for-profit organisation, serving a diverse, global membership of creators at all stages of their careers. The FAC was formed by artists, for artists, and places this ethos at the centre of all it does. It advocates, educates, collaborates and researches on behalf of artists, coming together to provide a strong collective voice within the industry and to governments domestically and abroad.
Formed in 2009, by seminal artists including Billy Bragg and Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason, the FAC’s board still represents some of the most recognised names in the music world, with current artists in residence that include Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien, Imogen Heap, Katie Melua, Sandie Shaw, Howard Jones, Fran Healy (Travis) and Blur’s David Rowntree. There are around 3,500 FAC members, whose fees are £5 (€5.60) monthly or £50 (€56) per year.
During the pandemic, the FAC has focused on different areas at different times (as is the nature of the impact). It moved quickly to survey members to assess the immediate impact of the lockdown. That data hugely supported its lobbying efforts both within the industry and to government. FAC’s Covid-19 directory has been keeping members up to date, while the organisation’s events have moved online to boost the community aspects of their work.
Iceland Music has been lobbying government to get funds into the system to assist with the drop in revenue for musicians and promoters
Iceland Music is an information agency and music export office. It does not have a membership system, but provides all sorts of information and support to the music community in Iceland, and promotes Icelandic music abroad.
The organisation runs IcelandMusic.is (in English) which offers a portal into the country’s diverse music scene, and Uton.is (in Icelandic), which provides a large range of tools, news and information for the local music community.
Iceland Music also administers the Music Export Fund, which distributes travel grants monthly and marketing grants quarterly. It also runs projects like Record in Iceland, which is a programme offering a 25% refund for projects that are recorded in Icelandic studios, and Firestarter Accelerator, which provides support for small businesses within the music community.
During the pandemic, the organisation has been lobbying government to get funds into the system to assist with the drop in revenue for musicians and promoters, venues, record stores and related operators.
Iceland Music has also been updating its educational materials, creating webinars, podcasts and educational videos that enable those working in the industry to learn more about the business.
This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.
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