Independent Festivals In Big Trouble From Lack Of COVID-19 Insurance
Without crucial government support, many United Kingdom independent music festivals are in danger of going out of business as 98.5% are not covered by insurance for COVID-19. The entire festival industry risks collapse, with total potential refunds estimated at up to £800m for this summer and a minimum of 90% of festivals postponed until next year. The AIF has lobbied the UK Government for support, claiming AIF collectively brings 820,000 visitors and generates £386 million for the British economy annually, 10% of which supports local businesses. Economic impact is a similar argument that other U.S. festivals such as SXSW used to stay open. Regardless of the result, this dire situation, combined with cancellations and delays of touring, will result in substantially less initial exposure for emerging, independent artists.
AI Song Contest Announces Winner
Dutch broadcaster VPRO and radio stations NPO 3FM and NPO Innovation held a song-creation contest to showcase the ability of AI and to see how well multi-disciplinary teams could create a song. The scoring was based on a panel of judges in AI and music related fields, made up of Ed Newton-Rex, Vincent Koops, and Anna Huang, as well as audience participation. The winning song was Beautiful The World by Uncanny Valley, an Australian group. AI has recently been applied to many professions all over the world, and it could help to create some amazing new songs. It also could allow for new people to enter the music industry to create something that everybody could tap their feet to. A new tool for musicians everywhere, it’s exciting to think where AI might take music.
Houseparty: A 3-Day Virtual Concert That Encourages Watch Parties
Houseparty, the group video chat app has seen significant growth during COVID-19 and introduced its biggest expansion this past weekend: a 3-day live event that featured over 40 celebrities performing virtual concerts and leading cooking, workout, and dance classes. Houseparty’s base functionality is online group video chat (e.g. FaceTime, Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts). However, this 3-day live event adds to this functionality by allowing friends to watch a scheduled live event together and interact with each other, hopefully increasing overall viewership engagement. As society continues to find ways to experience live events online, Houseparty’s experiment hopefully brings an alternative interactive experience and possible solution to captivating audiences on virtual live events.
Broadway Enters Online Streaming Universe
Pulitzer prize winning broadway production Hamilton is coming to Disney Plus in June of this year, a whole 15 months earlier than its intended release. The film will consist of a performance by the original cast, including show writer Lin-Manuel Miranda. This decision to move up the timeline comes after the sudden cancellations of live performances, closing of movie theaters, and fiscal uncertainty for Disney brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic. Given the commercial success of Hamilton in these past few years, its entry into streaming services may be the beginning of more performance based content on platforms such as Disney Plus, Netflix, and other streaming services.
Music Venue Updates:
Troubadour Struggling To Stay Open
Christine Karayan, owner of the famous “Troubadour” music venue known for premiering famous acts such as Elton John, opened up about the financial difficulties of running her venue during this time. Her quote paints the picture: “We’ve got no shareholders, no corporate funding and no income coming in whatsoever. But the bills are still coming…I’m confident we can easily make it to the end of the year — maybe beginning of next year — but that’s with me chipping away every single overhead we have.” Like other venue owners, Christine has petitioned support from local government, has joined the NIVA to lobby for greater financial relief for music venues as discussed in our previous Bumper Bites, and has also raised a total of $73,588 on her GoFundMe campaign. Unfortunately, the reality is venues like the Troubadour are struggling to get additional government support as resources must be split amongst many other struggling industries and businesses. The donation, while a significant amount, is not a sustainable solution for the Troubadour to survive. Finally, the Troubadour serves as one of the more financially stable and famous venues. It’s financial struggles highlights that venues need a more sustainable solution beyond government support and donations to survive this time period.
Bumper Bites newsletters reflect the opinions of only the authors who are associated persons of Stampede Securities, Inc. They are meant for informational purposes only, are not intended to serve as a recommendation to buy or sell any security and are not an offer or sale of a security. They are also not research reports and are not intended to serve as the basis for any investment decision. Any third-party information provided therein does not reflect the views of Stampede Securities Inc. Stampede Securities, Inc. is a funding portal (“Bumper Collective”) registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.