Inaugural Meeting Brings Together Representatives from Arenas, Cultural Institutions, Unions, and Nonprofit Sector with City Government to Develop Solutions to Industry-Wide Issues
NEW YORK – New York City Mayor Eric Adams today convened the city's first-ever Live Performance Industry Council meeting, where leaders in live performance and government gathered to address challenges facing the live performance industry. The council will develop strategies to drive inclusive growth in the sector, support New York City's creative economy, and ensure the industry recovers beyond pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels. The inaugural convening took place at Gracie Mansion and included Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce Maria Torres Springer; Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) Commissioner Pat Swinney Kaufman; New York City Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Laurie Cumbo; and NYC Tourism + Conventions President and CEO Fred Dixon, alongside council co-chairs Coco Killingworth, vice president of social impact at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), and Ken Sunshine, founder of Sunshine Sachs.
"Live performance has long been the heart and soul of this city — that's why we're continuing to support the industry's comeback and finding ways to uplift the creative New Yorkers who drive it," said Mayor Adams. "By bringing together leaders from across the industry and city government, we are not only supporting the individuals who make the live performance industry great but also ensuring that New York City will always be a global creative capital. Let's keep finding ways to help our theatre, music, and dance industries and all the exceptional people who entertain us with creative live performances."
"New York City's iconic live performance industry is the engine of our creative economy, employing hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers in good-paying jobs," said Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce Torres-Springer. "This first-ever council will bring together diverse leaders across the industry in partnership with city government to deliver on innovative, new strategies to build a more equitable and resilient future for this sector."
"We are so proud to have helped Mayor Adams convene this truly awesome collection of creative minds from across all verticals of New York City's live performance industry," said MOME Commissioner Kaufman. "We have an incredible opportunity with this council to communicate issues and brainstorm big ideas that will serve an industry that is not only an economic driver for this city, but one that also promotes tourism, safety, and small businesses."
"This is truly a unique moment and the beginning of an important conversation about the vital ecosystem of the live performing arts sector — the live beating heart of New York City," said Coco Killingsworth, vice president of social impact, BAM; and co-chair, Live Performance Industry Council. "We are why people come to New York City and, more importantly, we are why they stay, and this council will help us address some of the very real challenges but, also, enable us to think big about the next chapter for New York City."
"I commend Mayor Adams for convening one of the most distinguished meetings of leaders in live entertainment ever gathered together," said Ken Sunshine, founder, Sunshine Sachs; and co-chair, Live Performance Industry Council. "We look forward to both big and practical solutions to the challenges we all face in producing live shows in our great city."
The first-ever council includes the following 52 members:
Today's announcement and convening of the first-ever Live Performance Industry Council speaks to the Adams administration's ongoing commitment to invest in New York City's creative industry and workforce. Recent initiatives to support this sector include the creation of additional Industry Councils for TV/film and digital games; the extension of the NYC Women's Fund in Media, Music and Theatre; announcement of the Broadway Musicians Equity Partnership; release of the "Made in NY" Talks 2023 fall schedule; and ongoing support for the Broadway community via the Curtain Up! Broadway Festival and Broadway Week.
In 2019, the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment commissioned the All New York's A Stage; NYC Small Theater Industry Cultural and Economic Impact Study, which found that 748 venues and organizations are responsible for $1.3 billion in economic output, more than 8,400 full-time jobs, and $512 million in wages.