arts

COVID-19 is taking a ‘frightening’ toll on Miami-Dade’s arts and culture groups

For the Frost Museum of Science, the first of Miami-Dade’s major cultural institutions to reopen in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, a salvaged summer season was supposed to be something of a grace note in a lost year. It didn’t quite work out that way.

When the museum opened in June, administrators were hoping to recapture enough summer traffic, usually the highest of the year, to steady its capsizing finances. But a resurgence of infections in July and August, strict capacity limits and many families’ continued reluctance to risk exposure — even with well-publicized safety protocols — kept ticket sales at just a quarter of the level of the summer before, CEO Frank Steslow said.

Now, if Congress fails to approve a second hefty federal bailout along the lines of the multi-billion aid program that helped the Frost ride out three months of total closure, Steslow said, the

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We need all hands on deck to save America’s arts and culture economy

The outdoor stages are silent. There are no art fairs or gallery walks, no concerts in the parks. The COVID-19 pandemic has decimated arts and culture in America, wiping out as many as half of all jobs for performing artists and musicians, and nearly a third of jobs for all those who work in the creative economy broadly spanning arts, music, theater, design, entertainment and media, according a study we did for the Brookings Institution.

Between April and the end of July, some 2.7 million jobs and $150 billion in revenues were lost. As the crisis took hold this spring, the average income of American artists and creatives plummeted to just about $14,000 a year.

While Broadway’s darkened marquees stand as the most prominent symbol of the crisis, the damage is being felt across the nation. Atlanta, Nashville, New Orleans, Austin, Orlando, Las Vegas and Miami lost an even

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