The onset of the coronavirus pandemic shut down virtually all live entertainment in early 2020. Because of this, the venues that host these concerts and other events are still hurting—especially smaller, independent venues. This was why the National Independent Venue Association was created. NIVA is helping Chicago concert venues across the city in a variety of ways. According to their website, NIVA’s mission is “to preserve and nurture the ecosystem of independent venues and promoters throughout the United States.” Comprising over 3000 venues across the country, the association lobbies Congress and individual state governments for additional funding for these independent venues. NIVA has also established a relief fund for people to donate to help save venues from going under, and has developed an initiative called Save Our Stages to fight for legislation and support from Congress.
There are a number of Chicago concert venues that are part of the association. Chicago’s own Chris Bauman, CEO of Zenith Music Group and owner of some Chicago concert venues, explains in his interview with Vocalo that the pandemic has brought together several independent venues in the city to save the history and culture surrounding the venues. Many of the city’s venues were built several years ago, and NIVA is working to retain the community’s beloved buildings where “grandparents used to take their grandchildren.”
Fortunately, with the help of individuals across the U.S. sending emails to their representatives and the support of many popular artists, the Save Our Stages Act has been passed to help keep venues afloat as part of the next COVID-19 Relief Bill. You can find out more about NIVA and the Save Our Stages Act, as well as donate to their relief fund to help save your favorite Chicago concert venues at https://www.nivassoc.org/.
You can also read more of our blog posts at https://www.starevents.com/blog/.