We are returning after have taken a couple of months off to regroup and chart a new course in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are happy to be back in touch with you!
In the past 3 months we have frozen our fundraising efforts through Patreon in order to give our donors a break and to assess how Honest Pint will move forward. And while we won’t be returning to live theatre any time soon, we have begun a couple of new initiatives that will keep us engaged in the business of telling stories and with our audiences.
In August we held our first online event, TAP ROOM, where we read a play with our Pintrons (WATER BY THE SPOONFUL by Quiara Alegria Hudes) and had a lively discussion about it via Zoom. It was really fun and so we’re doing it again this month!
Mark your calendars for September 23, 7:00 pm and plan to join us as we discuss THE NICETIES by Eleanor Burgess. This time we are opening up the TAP ROOM to anyone who wants to join. If you are interested in reading the play at your own leisure and hanging out with us to talk about its themes, characters, and social relevance, then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for information and instructions.
The play is a powder keg and speaks to the recent social unrest and issues of racial justice we have been witnessing.
“A barnburner of a play. One of the best plays I’ve seen about who gets to tell the story of America, and how.” — The Washington Post
We also plan to bring back HOME BREW, our every-now-and-then series featuring local artists/creatives. Of course it will be virtual for now.
Details on HOME BREW coming soon…
Friends, this month we want to shine a light on something you probably already have presumed but perhaps you don’t know the real numbers -- the COVID-19 pandemic is obliterating arts organizations and careers each day that it drags on. We want to share with you some VERY SOBERING statistics from beanartshero.com.
The Arts & Culture sector is a BIG BUSINESS, employing 5.1 million people nationally and providing $877 billion value added to the U.S. economy.
Arts & Culture adds:
5 times more value to the GDP than agriculture
$87 Billion more than construction
$265 Billion more than transportation
The Arts & Culture sector is a cornerstone of the larger U.S. economy, making up 4.5% of GDP. Despite their out-sized cultural and economic contribution, the Arts & Culture sector of the U.S. economy is in grave danger. It is NOT getting the government funding other sectors have in this time of economic crisis.
Nationally, financial losses to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations are an estimated $9.1 Billion as of July 2020.
96% of organizations have cancelled events, some as far out as Summer 2021, resulting in a loss of $10.4 Billion in event-related spending by arts audiences at local businesses (restaurants, hotels, retail)
According to the Brookings Institute economic report Lost Art: Measuring COVID-19’s devastating impact on America’s creative economy, they estimate a loss of 2.7 million jobs and more than $150 Billion in sales of goods and services for creative industries nationwide, representing nearly a third of all jobs in those industries.
The fine and performing arts industries will be hit hardest, suffering estimated losses of almost 1.4 million jobs and $42.5 Billion in sales. These estimated losses represent 50% of all jobs in those industries and more than a quarter of all lost sales nationwide.
Arts/creatives are among the most severely affected workers by the COVID-19 crisis.
62% have become fully unemployed.
Nationally, they expect to lose $50.6 Billion in lost income in 2020.
94% report income loss.
66% are unable to access supplies, resources, spaces, or people they need to do their work.
75% use their art to create morale and community cohesion.
47% of shuttered arts organizations have no target date for re-opening.
29% have laid off their staff.
Of those that have reduced staff, just 39% expect to return to pre-COVID levels in 2021.
COVID-19 is spiking nationally, meaning Arts & Culture institutions will remain shuttered for the foreseeable future. In fact, 41% of Arts & Cultural Institutions report they are “not confident” that they will survive the pandemic.
Furthermore, the common “survival jobs” for Arts workers are in the hospitality and service sectors, which have been almost equally devastated by this crisis. With over 20 million unemployed, the competition for “survival jobs” is fierce; millions will remain unemployed for the foreseeable future.
We heard one story of a 52 year-old artist who had to sublet her apartment in New York City for the remainder of the lease and move back home to the Midwest with her elderly parents who are in their 80s. Careers have been decimated. People’s lives are at stake because they suddenly have no health insurance and no way to cover medical costs.
It's not just Art & Culture workers, unions, and organizations who are in trouble: administrators, management, hospitality staff, custodians, and countless others depend on Arts & Culture institutions for income are currently relying on the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program to pay their bills. When FPUC ended on August 1st, millions of Arts workers now face instant financial catastrophe, including eviction, which disproportionately impacts the Black community. An estimated 40 Million Americans face eviction by October 1st.
Without immediate relief, institutions themselves will permanently close; causing systemic economic collapse in a vibrant ecosystem of mutually beneficial businesses that all rely on Arts & Culture institutions for their success.
Compounding the tragedy is that millions of arts workers are losing (or have lost) their health insurance during a deadly pandemic; a pandemic that also disproportionately impacts those who are BIPOC.
The situation is nothing less than a full-on socioeconomic and humanitarian catastrophe in the making, exacerbating pre-existing inequalities to a desperate and deadly limit.
LET’S PUT THIS IN PERSPECTIVE:
10 U.S. airlines received $50 billion in CARES act relief.
While no one questions the necessity of keeping those 10 airlines solvent, Arts & Culture contribute a value-added of $265 Billion more to the U.S. GDP than the whole of U.S. Transportation.
These industries deserve a proportionate level of relief for a sector of the economy that contributes 4.5% to U.S. GDP and provides over 5 million jobs.
Proportionate relief to The Arts & Culture sector is not only just, it is integral to stave off the collapse of a cornerstone of our economy and all the other sectors that rely on it.
Without an Arts & Culture recovery, there will be no full American economic recovery.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
BE AN ARTS HERO! CALL YOUR SENATORS.
That’s the absolute most effective way to help. Emailing, signing petitions, and tagging your Senators are all other great ways, but calling your Senator remains the MOST impactful.
Here is a Google doc with U.S. senators contact info:
Here’s a script you can use if you don’t know what to say:
And please visit https://beanartshero.com to learn more about ways American workers are losing their livelihoods and how you can help in the recovery of the Arts & Culture sector. It is a 100% volunteer-run organization dedicated to helping individuals and institutions affected by the COVID-19 crisis. You can learn more about their mission to obtain relief funding administration and disbursal.
BE AN ARTS HERO!
How does this affect Honest Pint, you may ask? Well, the theatre community is an eco-system. Without Broadway and Off-Broadway, there is no regional theatre (like Playmakers Rep). Without regional theatre, there is no local, professional theatre (like Theatre Raleigh or us) or community theatre (like Raleigh Little Theatre or Theatre in the Park or NRACT). We are all interconnected, especially on a local level here in the Triangle. We rely on each other to share resources, ideas, audiences, and workers. When one of us falls, the loss is felt throughout the entire community. It hurts all of us.
And none of us is immune to the wrath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Please continue to support your local Arts & Culture sector, especially theatre companies like us.
Thank you! We look forward to seeing you on September 23 for THE NICETIES. Be sure to follow us on Instagram and FaceBook for updates.
Stay well and safe.
Until we meet again, DRINK DEEP!
— Susannah and David
A final thought...
The national election is just 61days away (as of Wednesday).
The ONLY way we have the power to affect change is to VOTE.
Please visit https://www.whenweallvote.org to register, to double-check that you are registered (don’t presume ANYTHING), to request a ballot and find mail-in ballot FAQs, to learn your voting rights, and to encourage others to do the same.
When We All Vote is a non-partisan organization dedicated to increase participation in every election and to close the race and age voting gap by changing the culture around voting.