Music Beyond Mainstream, a collection of 12 UK concert halls, has partnered with the Music Venue Trust’s #SaveOurVenues campaign for an online concert on June 12.
The coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly had a massive impact on the global music and arts scene. With no live shows for the foreseeable future, venues across the world are struggling to pay bills and keep their businesses afloat. Music Beyond Mainstream, a consortium of 12 large UK regional concert halls, has recently partnered with the Music Venue Trust’s #SaveOurVenues campaign to help raise money for small to mid-size venues.
While Music Beyond Mainstream consists of concert halls over 1,100 capacity, Music Venue Trust raises money for smaller grassroots venues across the country, 400 of which are currently at “imminent risk of being closed permanently.” These venues are crucial to the entire music scene, as they allow new musicians and audiences to discover and support a wide variety of performers. Over £2 million has already been raised in the #SaveOurVenues campaign. On June 12, the 1,640-capacity music centre Sage Gateshead is streaming their 2014 concert with American singer-songwriter John Grant and Royal Northern Sinfonia in an attempt to raise even more.
“We hugely appreciate this act of solidarity from Music Beyond Mainstream, who recognise that all venues are part of a live music ladder that sees artists start their careers in grassroots venues before progressing onto larger stages.”Beverley Whitrick, Strategic Director, Music Venue Trust
The critically acclaimed concert will be live-streamed on Sage Gateshead’s Facebook. It will simultaneously be streamed by nine other member venues including Manchester Bridgewater Hall and Edinburgh Usher Hall. The 2014 event saw John Grant paired with the 34-piece chamber orchestra for a UK tour. Royal Northern Sinfonia has also collaborated with artists such as Pet Shop Boys and Joanna Newsom.
“Covid-19 is challenging every aspect of the music sector. Musicians’ livelihoods are at risk and venues large and small are in peril of closure because of financial challenges. It is important that all this sector makes it through this crisis.”Tasmin Austin, Associate Director of Programming, Sage Gateshead
The concert will be available for free via Facebook Live at 8 PM BST on Friday June 12. Viewers are encouraged to donate to the #SaveOurVenues fund to support the UK’s live music scene.