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19th June 2019 - Written by Eggar Forrester Creative for DMS
Emerging artists and promoters, the unsung heroes for the music world. When your average consumer discovers 'new' music, they often have no idea of the years of hard work and passion that have gone into getting that artist to the point that they can even be discovered. From learning an instrument or training their voice, songwriting and rehearsing continually until they feel confident enough to take to the stage, finding a grassroots venue or promoter that will host them, performing well enough to gain fans and attract that fanbase to bigger shows, eventually raising enough money to record a basic demo... and that's just fraction of it.
What is often most overlooked is that these artist make all of this happen, usually entirely unassisted, while also working in full time employment to make ends meet. As they immerse themselves in their local scenes and make connections with venues, promoters and other artists, the fortunate ones go on to find work within the music industry, becoming promoters, venues bookers, sometimes even venue owners themselves. What is again often overlooked by music fans and gig attendees is that opening, growing and sustaining a music venue is just as difficult as beginning a career as an artist.
We've teamed up with Eggar Forrester Creative to offer advice to these grassroots promoters and venue operators, who provide a vital platform to emerging artists struggling to be discovered. Granted, insurance isn't the most glamourous of topics and may only be useful for a fraction of our readership. However, with many musicians also working in venues, and 35% of British venues closing their doors over the last decade, we feel a duty of care to help to inform and protect those remaining however we can. Over to the professionals to tell you more...|
So you run, own or operate within a small music/performance venue. You deal with bands, crew and performers all day long. Organising people and spotting talent is your thing - insurance probably is not! However, knowing what your responsibilities are in terms of providing the right cover for your talent, your staff, property and equipment is essential.
The day to day management of a venue and the inherent risks that are involved mean that having a sophisticated insurance policy is highly recommended. From gig cancellation and no-shows to making sure your insurer is aware that you regularly host foam-parties, the eccentricities of venue ownership are the stuff of legend. There are a lot of risks involved in the live event venue business: from equipment damage to a cancelled event, which means you and your business could be put at fault.
Don’t wait for something to go wrong to find out the hard – and expensive – way. Here is Eggar Forrester Creatives' list of go-to insurance that you would need in the world of grassroots music and performance venues.
Accidents happen, particularly at fast-paced events or gigs, and where people and their property are at risk, a split-second lapse in concentration could end up costing dearly, and so it’s always sensible to have public liability in place. It is important to make sure that your event is as safe as can be, but we appreciate that sometimes life can be unpredictable. For example, if you leave decorations or debris obstructing a path and someone is to slip, trip or fall and suffer injury because of your negligence, your Public Liability cover will respond. Your public liability cover will also protect you in the event you cause accidental damage to a venue that you are hiring for your event.
Professional Indemnity insurance typically shields you from third-party lawsuits or faults in the event that you or your business are held responsible for mishaps or mistakes. For example, a scheduling mistake on your part can lead to a cancellation, which would breach your contract. Professional Indemnity insurance will help protect your organisation in these instances.
Event organisers have a lot to think about in the run up to their events, particularly if they are hiring in equipment. Bespoke cover will provide peace of mind if you have any equipment at your event that you might have hired, borrowed or own. You'll want an insurance plan that covers the assets you own and the equipment you use for events and tours.
Buildings insurance covers damage to the structure of your property including any permanent fixtures and fittings. So, if you suffer a flood or a fire or a pipe bursts causing water damage, you’ll be covered for the cost to repair the damage.
Business Interruption protects you if you lose out on income following a material damage claim. If a flood or fire results in a venue being closed for a long period of time, this loss of income can be hugely significant, so this is a very important cover to consider.
If something unforeseen and unavoidable is to occur and your event can no longer go ahead, cancellation cover is specifically designed to recoup your expenses and irrecoverable costs. This is a practical cover for event organisers who are looking to insure their peace of mind. An event or tour is always at risk of a cancellation or artists non-appearance due to unforeseen or uncontrollable circumstances. Non-appearance insurance protects you if your artist fails to make an appearance and fulfil their contract. Both event cancellation and non-appearance insurance an also reimburse you for any loss in revenue.
Travel insurance is usually an option when you buy a plane, bus, or train ticket. It can come in handy, especially if you miss a flight, need to re-book tickets, or must cancel a trip altogether. The extra fees for travel insurance are definitely worth it for gigging musicians, especially for international acts.
Depending on your event, you might opt for other speciality insurance plans. For example, if you are setting off fireworks at the end of a concert, you'll need pyrotechnics insurance to cover any mishaps, injuries, or failures. Another speciality insurance option includes weather insurance, which can help offset losses should the weather (rain, snow, sleet, etc.) lead to a loss of attendees. This is particularly useful for festival organisers.
You don’t have to be Hillary Clinton to fall foul of a cyber-attack. If you hold sensitive information of any kind or your business relies on the internet (who’s doesn’t!) to function, then this is well worth considering.
Unfortunately this is becoming a more conscious threat, and an area to consider. Terrorism cover is an additional insurance policy that can protect against potential losses and liabilities that may occur due to terrorist related activities. This covers a loss from a terrorist act and can also provide cover for a terrorist threat or from loss of income due to a terrorist act occurring nearby. Not all policies will cover threat or loss of earnings due to a nearby act, so it is best to discuss with your broker.
Contact a Specialist Broker
The best way to ensure you and your venue are covered is to contact a specialist broker, such as Eggar Forrester Creative, who can advise you on all the nuances of live event venue insurance.