I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that there’s not much money going round the country at the moment, and councils are having to make pretty significant cuts… Manchester is no exception – last week the council published their proposed budget details which makes pretty grim reading.
The council is an important source of funding for the Manchester Jazz Festival and NWJazzworks, and they certainly won’t be immune from these cuts. However, its possible that the extent to which their funding is cut could be restricted if jazz musicians show their support for the organisation and demonstrate how valuable a resource it is – the festival is one of the leading commissioners of new music (especially now through its mjf originals scheme; congratulations to Adam Fairhall by the way!), and a big part of its programming policy is designed to support musicians living and/or working in the North West. Even for the 11 non-festival months of the year, NWJazzworks does sterling work promoting events, raising awareness of musicians and their activities, as well as helping us out with funding applications and career development. I know that Beats & Pieces certainly wouldn’t be at the stage we’re at without support from Steve, Mick and the team!
You can register your support by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org – you may be doubtful that just writing a quick email can make a difference, but Birmingham Jazz was recently in a similar situation and managed to avoid the worst case scenario, partly due to public support and pressure. Manchester jazz needs you!