The Seymour Center won a grant totaling $ 496,399 to carry out its 2021-2022 artistic program.
This is part of the fourth round of grants from the Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund, a government initiative to support the post-pandemic recovery of the arts and entertainment sector.
The new funding, announced on July 30, is proposed to enable 178 performances to be delivered to 19,000 spectators over 16 months of multi-genre productions and events at the Seymour Center.
In a statement, the artistic director and general manager of the Seymour Center, Timothy Jones, said the grant provides certainty to pursue “theatrical works that champion new voices, challenge the status quo and inspire large audiences through the creative expression of great ideas ”.
At present, the Seymour Center does not intend to include student productions as part of the grant, which was awarded specifically to maintain the employment of artists and professional workers.
Jones says the Seymour Centre’s long-term strategic plan aims to include “increased opportunities for students to do and present work,” and looks forward to meeting with student groups after the lockdown.
As a backbone of USyd reviews, shows and productions, the Seymour Center plays a central role in promoting creative clubs and societies facing significant logistical and financial stress.
The POC Review executive said Honi that the financial constraints of producing a journal “severely restricted our creative process, artistic curiosity and limited execution”, citing frustrations such as unaffordable storage of costumes and sets, difficulty in covering costs and paperwork.
Even though the Seymour Center rental fee for performances is subsidized for student societies, the Movement and Dance Society (MADSOC) claims to have paid up to $ 20,000 for the Everest theater, including backstage.
While it feels supported by USU and the Seymour Center, the POC Revue Executive believes that part of the RISE grant should be devoted to supporting student productions, as this would “completely reorganize the arts scene at the university. and encourage a more dynamic and creative culture on Campus. “
Jones said allowing greater use of the Seymour Center by student organizations was “not an eligibility requirement for the grant.”
In the press release, Vice Chancellor Mark Scott did not comment on access to the grant for students, saying the funding “will allow us to meet the high demand for our programs.”
The Morrison government has been criticized for its slow response and for failing to deliver on its promises to the arts and entertainment industry – even by singer Guy Sebastian. As of July 20, only half of the $ 200 million RISE fund had been distributed to the industry.
Data from the Australia Institute shows that the arts and entertainment sector contributes $ 14.7 billion annually to the Australian economy.