Covid-19 sent Australia’s theatres into crisis, but the sector has faced deeper rooted issues for many years, Gillian Arrighi and Clare Irvine write.
Australia’s performing arts sector has long been recognised as an ecosystem. It is a community of artists, arts organisations and institutions, all affected by factors such as education and training, audiences, policy and revenues.
It comprises commercial organisations; not-for-profit, government subsidised companies; independent grassroots ventures and amateur groups making and touring creative works for audiences locally, nationally and internationally.
Every species in this ecology has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. As we transit from crisis to recovery, and the dust settles on a post-COVID terrain, it’s likely we’ll see a mass exodus of despairing freelance workers leaving the sector for good.
The demise of small companies lacking the infrastructure to survive is also on the cards. A decimation of university theatre departments has already happened. Taken together, this paints a bleak future... Keep reading on The Conversation.