BRITISH ENTERTAINMENT SEEKS GOVERNMENT INSURANCE HELP
British theatres and live music venues say the show will only go on if the government provides a financial backstop, as the COVID-19 pandemic means they can no longer get commercial insurance.
While venues for indoor live performances are not yet open in all of the United Kingdom, theatres and concert halls in England have, in theory, been open to socially-distanced audiences since mid-August.
But only a handful have opened, citing insurance as one of the many barriers, as underwriters have been excluding COVID-19 from their cover.
That means a theatre has no protection against cancellation or legal action from anyone in the audience or cast who falls ill – or from a lockdown due to COVID-19.
Organizers of live performances in the UK are seeking a scheme like the 500 million pound ($658m) deal announced by the British government for the film and TV industry in July.
The scheme will ensure productions for 70 percent of their losses if they have to abandon production due to the pandemic, up to a maximum of five million pounds ($6.58m).