Based on the latest data, France, with a population of 66.8 million people, federally funds music at $307 million. England (population 53 million) federally funds music at $53 million. The U.S., with a population of 321.4 million, spends just $8 million for music federally, and the Trump administration proposes cutting that to zero.
Pitchfork, the Condé Nast music zine, surveyed tax-supported music from Australia to Iceland to uncover “a complex, shifting landscape”. The results can enlighten American artists and policy makers, giving context in dark times.
“Like Australia, many rich countries use public funds to nurture homegrown musical talent. The amounts are often paid out by federal arts councils that tend to prioritize traditional fine arts like painting and opera, while contemporary music frequently draws funds from public-private partnerships. Regional and municipal governments contribute, too. Though these webs of financial assistance for music can be complex, and unique from country to country, the overall impression is of a funding landscape increasingly driven by market forces as much as cultural ones. And the threat of an ax to these budgets is nearly always an election away.” ~How Countries Around the World Fund Music—and Why It Matters, Pitchfork, June 26, 2017
According to the study, the trend to right-leaning governments does not necessarily mean slashed arts funding:
“Scandinavia also shows that a rightward turn politically doesn’t have to lead to less arts funding. Norway, for instance, has been led the past four years by a center-right coalition government that includes, for the first time, a nationalist party of the type that has been on the rise in Europe lately. And yet Arts Council Norway’s funding for music has soared, from less than $19 million in 2011 to nearly $47 million in 2017, which is impressive for a country with only about 5 million people. Total government spending on music in Norway also grew, from $117 million to around $140 million.” ~How Countries Around the World Fund Music—and Why It Matters, Pitchfork, June 26, 2017
We hope you’ll take time to read the full story on Pitchfork, How Countries Around the World Fund Music—and Why It Matters, and share this story with others.
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