LETTER: Performing arts make a substantial contribution to Victoria’s economy

As an avid supporter of the performing arts in our community and in particular Pacific Opera Victoria (POV), where I serve as a board member, I am dismayed by the recent decision of the Royal/McPherson Theatre Society (RMTS) to dramatically increase rental rates and restrict access of the local not-for-profit arts groups which rely on the Royal Theatre as the venue for their performances.

While as a result, the Victoria Symphony has already announced the relocation of some of their concerts to the Farquhar Auditorium at UVic, POV does not have that option as it requires the backstage facilities and infrastructure which are only available at the Royal Theatre.

The performing arts make a substantial contribution to the economy of our region. POV alone generated $2.8 million in employment income last year which were jobs for local artists, administrators, crafts people and staff at the Royal Theatre.

To jeopardize the ability of POV and other performing arts organizations that contribute so significantly to the economic and cultural well-being of our communities seems to be poor public policy indeed.

I join with many other arts lovers to ask that the RMTS reconsider their position, particularly given that the Royal Theatre currently generates significant operating surpluses.

I also hope the councils of Victoria, Oak Bay and Saanich, all of which make generous contributions to the Royal Theatre, will demand a reassessment of this unfortunate decision of the RMTS.

Mary Collins

Saanich

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police watchdog clears West Shore RCMP in altercation that led to man needing 82 staples

The man pretended he had a weapon he would use against the police

Highway 1 tree removal impacts traffic Tuesday evening

Work starts April 7 at 6 p.m. between Finlayson Arm Road and Westshore Parkway

Escaped python found in Saanich building reunited with its owner

The little snake is at ‘home, safe and sound,’ CRD chief bylaw officer says

Victoria police seek public’s help finding man missing more than a week

Joel Diment 26 and has short brown hair and hazel eyes

Mental Health: Planning for a crisis

Crisis planning lays out a blueprint in case hard times hit

COVID-19: Don’t get away for Easter weekend, Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

John Horgan, Adrian Dix call 130 faith leaders as holidays approach

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

Comox spring training cancelled for Snowbirds next month

The team announced that due to ongoing travel restrictions they will not be training in the Valley

Some Cowichan schools to reopen for children of essential-services workers

Cowichan Valley will open 8 elementary schools this week

RCMP call on kids to name latest foal recruits

The baby horses names are to start with the letter ‘S’

Physiotherapists turn to technology to reach patients during COVID-19

Just because services, jobs, and socializing have been put on hold, it… Continue reading

As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

Non-commercial land crossing dipped by 95%, air travel dropped by 96 per cent, according to the CBSA

Logan Boulet Effect: Green Shirt Day calls on Canadians to become organ donors

While social distancing, the day also honours the 16 lives lost in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos Crash

Most Read