Showcase Victoria’s Statement in response to Covid-19

The Showcase Victoria Executive, on behalf of event partners the Victorian Association of Performing Arts Centres (VAPAC) and Regional Arts Victoria is extremely disappointed to announce that after weeks of deliberation Showcase Victoria 2020 will be cancelled and will not move to an online model this year.

“We had come up with some really exciting and engaging solutions to present the event online but over the last couple of weeks it’s become clear that our venues are not in a position to commit to new programs within the traditional two-year cycle,” says Jenny Ryssenbeek, Executive Director, VAPAC.

“Most venues are still grappling with the immediate fall-out from the crisis including dealing with cancellations, the loss of casual staffing, the impact of sudden loss of income and the implications for future programming. This, combined with the fact that over 90% of 2020’s tours have now been rescheduled for 2021, means that opportunities for touring for artists and producers from this year’s event would be extremely limited and we don’t think that’s a fair situation to put people in.”

In addition, Jenny is at pains to point out that Showcase Victoria is determined not to jeopardise the relationships that would ordinarily be built between performance-makers and programmers at the event and we are now focussed on future plans to get everyone back in a room together as soon as possible.

“In some ways this is a great opportunity to pause and reflect on the current state-based touring model to ensure that it is the most effective mechanism to meet all stakeholder needs. We’ll also be using this time to consider how we can build stronger connections throughout the touring cycle and are looking forward to working on a new suite of resources to help our stakeholders navigate a way forward.”

In the meantime, artists who successfully applied to be part of the 2020 program will automatically be offered a place at Showcase Victoria 2021, and will also have their work profiled on a new-look Showcase Victoria website to which venues and programmers can refer. “The plan is that this will form part of a more bespoke service between venues and artists”, Jenny added.

The Showcase Victoria Executive is grateful for everyone’s patience during the decision-making process and especially acknowledges the support of Creative Victoria and venue partner, Bendigo Venues and Events and would also like to thank industry partners Red61 and OneMusic who came on board earlier this year to support Showcase Victoria 2020.

All further updates will be posted here and across social media channels and we will be in touch with 2020 program participants directly.

Take care,
The Showcase Victoria Team
29 April 2020

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