Dear Edmontonians, Musicians, Fans, and Supporters,
This announcement has been a long time coming, and we cannot wait to welcome everyone back into our venue! We figured it would be best to provide an update on our current standings at the venue and what our future looks like. Exciting changes to our venues operations and new career opportunities will be announced over the next couple months, as well as banging concerts, shows and events!
It is exciting that we are seemingly moving past the pandemic and can return back to being together, socializing and supporting the arts by taking in live shows! However live music venues are not out of the woods just yet. We have been doing our absolute best to advocate for our industry, with a few points that we have maintained the entire time:
- Our industry does not turn on with the flick of a switch; we need a minimum of 3 to 5 months to properly plan regionally based shows.
- Musicians need venues. Venues need venues. Although Alberta is “open” our neighbouring Provinces are not quite “open” yet. Touring independent musicians need venues open in each region in order to successfully finance their tour. British Columbia’s venue reopen date is September 7th, 2021.
- We need help from all levels of government to help lift our industry back up:
Municipally: To date the City of Edmonton has offered zero support towards business that operate within the live music and touring industries. With the upcoming municipal election we encourage all Edmontonians to press their local candidates and politicians to voice their plans in revitalizing Edmontons night life, travel and tourism economy.
Provincially: Although the Provincial Government has offered live music businesses one Micro Grant (with heavy restrictions) they have not been available to work with our industry. We are currently advocating for new licensing under the AGLC to allow for-profit businesses whose primary function is to operate as a ‘live music venue’ to be classified as a ‘Cultural Space’ in order to leverage additional funding opportunities specific to the for profit industry.
Federally: In 2020 the Federal Government opened phase 2 funding for ‘Emergency Support Fund for Cultural, Heritage and Sport Organizations’ to include for-profit businesses that operate within our industry. Along with this grant and the CEWS and CERS subsidies, venues like ours have been able to survive the last last 17 months without any form of revenue. The Federal government currently has a fund earmarked for for-profit businesses in our sector, although at this time no guidelines or an application release date has been set. With the CERS and CEWS subsides set to close Fall 2021 the situation remains dire.
The hurdles on the road ahead may feel like a mountain, with all of the uncertainties, but we will be moving forward, knowing that we have a broad support from all of you! The musicians, the fans and audience that have always supported our venue and our scene that we have all built together. Thank you so much for your support, we would not have survived these last 17 months without you! We really cannot wait to get back to what we do! Please stay tuned on our socials for amazing show announcements, career opportunities and fantastic venue news!
The Starlite Room
10030 102 Street NW