Friday, April 06, 2007

Cuts in Arts Council grants

I had a meeting last week with someone doing market research for the Arts Council which is having an "arts debate". If they hadn't interviewed me, then there would have been no focus whatsoever on jazz. It doesn't even seem to feature on their radar. I think that grants to jazz total 0.5% of their grant giving even though jazz audiences are the same size as those for opera!
Meanwhile, a large focus of getting money (and that includes the Vortex) is Grants for the Arts. These have just been reduced dramatically by 35 % according to the Guardian. Surreptitiously done and all the money goes to the Olympics. These have been vital for many years to support tours and other one-off projects. For example we have applied for £30000 for a new piano and p.a. from that scheme. It's also clear that the touring circuit for jazz has virtually disappeared over the past few years. I think that we can now get rid of the word "virtually" for the future.

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