Adelaide Fringe organisers call for extra $1m in funding

The organisers of the Adelaide Fringe are calling for a 50 per cent funding boost for 2021.

The extra $1 million from the state government would be used to help struggling artists in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, according to event director Heather Croall. The extra money would also help reduce artist registration and ticket fees next year.

“In 2021, it’s not going to be business as usual,” Croall told The Daily Telegrah. “We can’t be expected to roll Fringe out as usual. The message that we’re getting loud and clear from artists and venues – coming out of nine months of no work – is that they need to see the risk to participate in Fringe reduced.

“If we can lower those fees, it will give them confidence to sign up again.

“The people of South Australia want to see Fringe back. We all want Fringe to be able to switch on in 2021 and bring Adelaide alive again.”

The Fringe Festival attracted more than 32,000 interstate and international visitors this year, an 8 per cent increase on 2019.

“The return on investment for the state from the Fringe is really high,” Croall said. “We’re very good value for money.

“The injection we have into the economy from the tourism we generate is just incredible. It’s a great South Australian success story. We can’t wait to stage the brilliant, magical and world-class event that people know and love next year.”

Last week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the arts industry would receive a $250 million rescue package from the Federal Government.

“Adelaide Fringe is exactly the kind of arts event the Morrison Government’s $250 million JobMaker plan is designed to support,” Federal Arts Minister Paul Fletcher today told the ABC.

“Thousands of jobs across Australia’s arts industry will be backed with a new $250 million targeted package to help restart the creative economy and get the entertainment, arts and screen sectors back to work, as they rebuild from the impacts of COVID-19.”

The 2021 Festival is planned to run from February 19 to March 21.