The Barcelona Culture Shock Plan includes two sets of measures for supporting the city’s cultural fabric.
The first set, presented on 18 March, was joined by a second batch of initiatives very much aimed at generating support and accompaniment networks, increasing direct financial aid, deepening the diagnosis of the impact of culture on the city, and strengthening and adapting existing programmes.
The plan provides for an investment of €1,670,000 which are joining the €1,830,000 provided under the first shock plan approved this March, more than an additional million euros to boost all the planned communication initiatives.
DIRECT FINANCIAL AID
The first series of measures includes an extra subsidy of 1 million euros aimed at alleviating the effects of the crisis, putting special emphasis on the weakest structures linked to grass-roots culture in all its varieties and sectors (local theatres, creation spaces, cultural cooperatives and other entities in the sector).
Financial aid has been expanded through the second batch of initiatives, with €300,000 for projects which help to guarantee cultural rights in the post-COVID-19 scenario through creation, research and innovation. Programmes that take into account the digital environment and the need to maintain social distancing, and new lines of research and artistic projects at the pre-production and research stage are a few of the projects eligible for the grant.
It also includes subsidies of the order of €200,000 for adapting cultural spaces to the new safety measures that will be issued in response to the COVID-19 crisis. The financial aid will be allocated to cinemas, bookshops, art galleries and cultural shops. As for theatres, a proposal will be made to the Theatre Renovation Consortium, made up of the National Institute of Performing Arts and Music, the Catalan government and the City Council, to include financial aid for that purpose.
There will likewise be a coordinated extraordinary endowment of one million euros for purchasing books for Biblioteques de Barcelona, which will be added to the €270,391 municipal investment planned for 2020 and will have to benefit local bookshops in particular, so that they can already start invoicing by November for the orders they would receive from Barcelona's libraries.
The initiatives aimed at supporting the music centre also include an extension of the ‘Músics al carrer’ [Musicians on the Street] project, which is dedicated to performers who showcase their talent on the city’s streets, with a view to bringing it to other sectors of the performing arts. Ten new sites will presently be set up for musicians in the Ciutat Vella district and which will gradually extend to other districts and, later on, to other artistic disciplines, thereby encouraging a more intense relationship between public spaces and culture.
Plans are also on the way for converting Sala BARTS into a new Casa de la Música. In addition, the Sala Barcelona project should guarantee that the city's music halls, festivals, promoters and artists have the possibility of scheduling performances in venues set up by the City Council and having a basic infrastructure, such as the two auditoriums in the Parc del Fòrum Park and Monjuïc's Olympic Ring.
A CITIZEN CULTURE OFFICE AT THE PALAU DE LA VIRREINA
The support and accompaniment measures of this second stage of the Shock Plan will involve the creation of a Citizen Culture Office on the ground floor of the Palau de la Virreina (which currently houses the Tiquet Rambles office). Besides the tasks carried out so far at these offices, the venue will soon be providing direct advice on municipal subsidies and grants, as well as a personalised care service on the measures included in the shock plan. The transformation of the venue, which will provide new information services from June during its first phase, will involve refurbishment works from November. The end goal is to create a meeting and reception space for the cultural sector that is open and connected to La Rambla.
All the support measures for the cultural fabric, as well as the reorganisation of the city's big cultural events calendar, can be consulted on this new website portal.
Barcelona City Council is providing incentives for cultural consumption with its Culture Bonus, a discount to encourage cultural consumption among the general public while also stimulating the economic and business sector of the city's creative and cultural industries. This is a cultural discount, valid in all the cultural establishments and venues in Barcelona that are members of the scheme, for the purchase of books and tickets for the cinema, theatrical shows and concerts.
The initiative is the result of a collaboration between the City Council and ADETCA (Theatre Businesses of Catalonia), ASACC (Association of Catalan Concert Venues), the Catalan Chamber of Books, the Guild of Catalan Booksellers, the Guild of Catalan Cinemas and the TresC Culture Community.
Further information: www.bonuscultura.com/barcelona