Vancouver To Light Up City Hall In Red To Bring Attention To Struggling Arts And Live Events Industries

Emilee Geist

Venues will be lit up on Tuesday, September 22. The City of Vancouver will join municipalities, venues, and communities across the country on Tuesday, September 22, to mark a “day of visibility” for the struggling arts and live events industries, which have been effectively shut down since earlier this year. […]

Venues will be lit up on Tuesday, September 22.

Vancouver To Light Up City Hall In Red To Bring Attention To Struggling Arts And Live Events IndustriesThe City of Vancouver will join municipalities, venues, and communities across the country on Tuesday, September 22, to mark a “day of visibility” for the struggling arts and live events industries, which have been effectively shut down since earlier this year.

Light Up Live is being organized as a ‘red alert’ for the sector, to remind Canadians of the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had directly on venues, workers, and businesses in Vancouver and across the country. The event builds on successful campaigns in Germany (#nightoflight2020) and the UK (#LightItInRed), and globally (#WeMakeEvents), that have helped raise the profile of an industry that has lost 80-95% of its business since March.

“Arts and culture embody our most deeply held values and aspirations, and help us imagine the futures we long for. We all miss the shared, transformative experience of attending live events,” says Branislav Henselmann, Managing Director of Cultural Services at the City of Vancouver “and we remain committed to supporting our cultural venues, events, and arts workers, who have worked so hard to make our arts, culture, music, and events sectors thrive across our city.”

Beginning at sundown, Vancouver City Hall as well as Vancouver Civic Theatres venues, the Orpheum and Queen Elizabeth Theatre, will join the national movement, and light their exteriors in red in support of hundreds of venues and buildings across the City, to raise awareness for an industry that is still dark – and will be one of the last to recover from the pandemic. The City, as part of its recovery efforts, remains committed to supporting the return of our thriving arts and event industries.

“Our goal is to ensure the government acknowledges that our industry has been uniquely impacted by the effects of COVID-19,” says national organizer and co-founder of Live Event Community, Morgan Myler, “and that it will continue to offer financial support for live event workers and companies throughout the supply chain until large gatherings are once again deemed safe and the industry comes back to life”.

At 7pm on Tuesday evening, City Hall, the Burrard Street Bridge, and venues across the City will be lit up and, throughout the evening, images and video will be shared across social media using the hashtags #LightUpLive and #EclaironsLesScenes.

“The Orpheum and Queen Elizabeth Theatres are iconic and much-loved in Vancouver”, says Natalie Lue, Director of Vancouver Civic Theatres, “and we’ve missed welcoming audiences to our live events. Light Up Live is a great opportunity to show some hope to venues and our colleagues that we all want to see our sector survive and get back to work as soon we can safely do so.”

Locally, sector initiatives like SoundON, which launched earlier this summer to support the resilience and recovery of the live music industry, see supporting venues, artists, presenters, and industry workers as key to the survival of live events in our city.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on the music industry,” says Lindsay MacPherson, Executive Director of Music BC. “We need to find all the ways we can to raise awareness and bring support to our beloved industry, our venues, and live events workers during this time.”

For more information and to see a list and interactive map featuring the participating venues, visit www.lightuplive.ca

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