Member of the Welsh Parliament for Monmouth, Nick Ramsay, during last week’s Plenary called on the Welsh Government to do more to support musicians and the arts generally in Wales during the pandemic.
Speaking in the Senedd Nick said: “The Musicians' Union have been very active on Twitter recently, and they've been raising some very extremely concerning statistics regarding the plight of musicians through the pandemic. Thirty-six per cent of musicians have no work at all; 87 per cent will be earning less than £20,000 per year. I know that Stephen Crabb has raised this issue in Parliament. Given that the arts are largely devolved to Wales, I wonder if we could have a statement from the Welsh Government as to what support is being given to the arts during this difficult time, particularly music. We know the importance that music has not just for musicians, but for all of us in terms of our mental health. I'm sure we want to listen to music, particularly at the moment, through the pandemic, and I think you'd agree with me that music deserves better.”
In reply Rebecca Evans MS stated: “I absolutely recognise the impact that the coronavirus has had on those people who are working within the music industry, both in terms of organisations and choirs and so on, but also freelancers who earn their living through the music industry as well. That's why we're continuing to work alongside our music stakeholder group to understand the concerns and the impact of the coronavirus, and have also announced funding through the £53 million cultural recovery fund. So, I would advise organisations and individuals to explore whether some financial support might be available to them through that particular fund.”