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European Associations from the live event sector have sent a joint letter to EU Internal Market commissioner Thierry Breton (pictured), calling for a coordinated post-lockdown strategy for Europe’s cultural venues and events.

The letter emphasises the impact the lack of a coordinated approach is having on the European events industry, both economically and in terms of the wellbeing of its workers. The letter was orchestrated by Live DMA, a European network for live music associations, and was signed by organisations including the the Arena Resilience Alliance, European Festival Association YOUROPE and Liveurope – a live music platform for new European talent.

Among the issues highlighted in the letter is that venues are unable to get up and running at the flick of a switch: “For event organisers and venues, holding events at full capacity is an operation that may require up to three to nine months of planning. In the absence of a coordinated EU-level reopening scheme, including the mobility of artists and touring companies, these costly and logistically burdensome activities are unlikely to come back to European venues soon”

In the letter the signatories call on Breton to take the lead, acknowledging it will undoubtedly require the involvement of multiple ministries and the support of other EU commissioners.

Live DMA’s coordinator Audrey Guerre said, “Live music venues, clubs and festivals are still in the middle of the crisis. We are very concerned about the mental health of the staff working in live music who had to continuously adapt with a lack of recognition by public authorities. We need to foresee what comes next.

“Venues, clubs and festivals are important spaces of socialisation which cannot be replaced by live streaming. This is why we call for a reopening under safe conditions, including amateur practices and educational activities. Music organisations need a financial and structural support until music venues and clubs activities go back to normal. More than ever, we must support our local music scenes.”