The following is an audio exclusive on independent venue owners awaiting federal relief.
The National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) formed during the pandemic to support independent performance venues and promoters. The group now encompasses 3,000 performance spaces in 50 states including Washington D.C., and they’ve pressured the Small Business Administration (SBA) to act. By the end of 2020, the SBA signed the Save Our Stages Act, implementing the largest arts funding program in history with $16 billion allocated for independent venues. It took months of lobbying to get the federal government’s attention, and in early June, when only 100 venues had received aid, the lobbying continued. In this audio exclusive, correspondent Janet Hernandez, an intern for The Laura Flanders Show, interviews Stephen Chilton, NIVA’s vice president and owner of the independent venue The Rebel Lounge in Phoenix, AZ. What’s at stake when venues can’t reopen, and how will NIVA support the industry post-pandemic?
- Stephen Chilton, Vice President, NIVA; Venue owner, The Rebel Lounge
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