Threshold Festival organisers issue statement about payment of artists

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Threshold Festival organisers hit back at online criticism for not paying bands.


Threshold Festival, which starts on March 28-30 2014, have issued a statement hitting back at criticism they do not pay some artists that play the three day event.
The festival, now in its third year, is a cross-arts grassroots platform for predominantly emerging new musicians, artists and entertainers.
However, online criticism has been directed at organisers for not paying some acts leading to organisers to defend their position.
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Here’s the statement posted on Threshold’s site earlier this evening.
An Age Old Debate On Which We Wish To Clarify Our Position.
Every Year since we began in 2011, we have received the same messages from people (mostly people who are not involved with the festival) on Social Media, asking if we are going to pay our artists.
We’ve always tried to be forthcoming with this, but also tried to keep it off public sites where the wrong comment could jeopardise an event which a massive amount of time and effort goes into creating each year.
We follow the same policies as any established music and arts festival, some headline acts have pre-arranged fees, some acts have agreed expenses (for visual arts we cover material costs), other acts play for the opportunity and to contribute to the festival which we believe to be a valid boost to the creative scene of the city. We NEVER operate a Pay To Play policy.
We are not just a grass roots festival, we are a grass roots business. Many of the festival team and the organisers are artists themselves and have performed at and created work for countless, well established festivals for little or no money. We are not saying that this is ideal, but every artist that takes part in an opportunity to reach a wider audience (which is what a festival should always be viewed as) usually will take this in and can in some cases see a growth in their career as a result of that commitment.
All artists are provided with complimentary refreshments, full festival access and press and networking opportunities, plus a follow up service from the organisers in helping to widen their networks and gain gigs and commissions throughout the year.
Like many of our artists, none of the directors or organising team have received salaries, fees or any payment for their work, we have however paid out to service providers without whom the festival can not and will not go ahead. These are the costs that the majority of people don’t quite understand. Yes we do think that hiring a stage or paying to print wristbands is just as valued as the work of an artist, but in terms of financial payout, it just isn’t like that.
For information, the festival does not make a profit and is not run with that intention. It is our belief however that the event needs to begin to make a profit at some stage in order to make our business a sustainable one, but this profit will be invested solely into the event and this will ultimately lead to better payments for artists too, but for any artist starting out to be paid well for early work is frankly unrealistic.
Threshold Festival annually showcases the work of well over 500 individuals and relies on a monumental amount of good will, support and a respect and belief that our intentions are honourable. We are passionate about what we do to lengths that the vast majority will never comprehend.
We’re here to showcase great art, not to fight for justice for it, that’s someone else’s fight. We support them all the way.
We Hope You Enjoy Threshold 2014
Chris, Kaya & Andy.

Further Threshold Festival coverage on Getintothis
The Destroyers to headline Threshold Festival‘s opening night.

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