The Evil Imp

Coming Good

Regular readers of Article19 will know that we, here in TheLab™, have little time for the AD of Sadler’s Wells Theatre Alistair Spalding. We have our reasons, do some digging to find out why.

That said the man came good when confronted with some journalistic jackassery from Gavin Esler on the BBC news programme Newsnight on July 15th.

Mr Spalding did a good job of debunking the oft claimed notion that people working in the arts are living large at the public’s expense. Pointing out at one point that “dancers earn a pittance” when challenged by Mr Elser as to why artists should be on the “public payroll” which they aren’t but that’s another issue.

At one point Mr Esler stated that there might be “[too many dance companies]” and we were slightly disappointed that Mr Spalding didn’t ask him to name at least five of them to really push home what an utter due-dilligence scofflaw Esler is.

Esler (sod the Mr.) can also be heard repeating the coalition government’s talking point phrase “times of austerity”. Nice to have a BBC journalist framing your policy shop gibberish for you.

There’s a lot being written in the media about the coming cuts to the arts budget. Comments from the public, when they are enabled, are often to be found framing public funding as “handouts” for irresponsible arts organisations safely ensconced from the rest of the “real” world in their Crystal Castles™.

If you’re thinking of countering this nonsense then make yourself clear. When it comes to companies, ADs, choreographers and dancers, the vast majority are being paid rubbish wages, especially in relation to the amount and difficulty of the work they do.

Millions of people of all kinds that pay taxes of all kinds really like the arts quite a lot and would rather the government didn’t send us all back to the stone age as far as cultural development is concerned.

It’s got something do with human beings being sentient.

We would also appreciate it if the right wing hacks would stop lying their arses off, but we’ll get to them soon enough.