North Texas artists, music venues hoping Save Our Stages Act gets passed
Texas Congressman Roger Williams is co-sponsoring pandemic relief legislation for music venues.
Senator John Cornyn recently co-sponsored similar legislation in the Senate.
Both the House and Senate bills have bipartisan support.
Some have been creative with how to keep the music going, like the Levitt Pavilion.
Still, that doesn’t change the fact that the entire industry could use a big boost.
Singer-songwriter Abraham Alexander belted out an original song Friday during the virtual living room concert series that is being held in lieu of the real thing at the Levitt Pavilion in Downtown Arlington.
The pavilion is out of commission due to the pandemic.
“We want to keep getting music out there, and we felt it’s part of our responsibility to help pay those artists. So that’s been important to our mission,” said Letatia Teykl, executive director of the Levitt Pavilion.
Teykl is a big supporter of the proposed Save Our Stages Act for federal legislation.
Congressman Roger Williams was at Billy Bob’s Texas Friday Morning to drum up support.
Billy Bob’s recently changed its TABC license to reopen as a restaurant and music venue, to resume live concerts soon.
“It’s a $10 billion program that allows recipients to pay for necessities, like utilities, rent, PPE, and, maintenance,” Williams said. “It’s vital for these venues were talking about to have a flow of capital during the time when they are shut down.”
The money for live music venues would be allocated as grants through the SBA, much like the Paycheck Protection Program.
Officials with the historic Kessler Theater in Dallas is reiterating what’s become a familiar verse.
“This bill being targeted for our industry would really be a lifeline. We do have expenses every month just to keep the buildings functional. To keep staffing, with minimal staffing and regular utility bills,” Diana Cox explained.
Artists like Monica Saldavar have been able to keep semi productive with virtual events.
The goal is to prepare to crank up the volume and thrive again, they hope with help from the federal government.
“Any kind of funding that would help us as we maintain leading into 2021 would be great. Would be awesome. We’re pulling for it, plus, we all need music,” Teykl added.