Rt Hon George Osborne MP
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rt. Hon. George Osborne MP, visited the Theatre Royal, Brighton to launch the new theatre tax relief coming in on 1 September 2014.
His visit comes as English Touring Theatre, in partnership with Theatre Royal Brighton Productions, announces the new touring production of Tom Stoppard’s ‘Arcadia’.
A play exploring the relationship between the past and present, this will be the first major tour of the UK since the National Theatre tour. This has been made possible by the introduction of the new tax relief and will be one of the first productions to benefit.
Rt Hon George Osborne MP
Visiting the Theatre Royal, the Chancellor met with members of the touring theatre community to discuss the tax relief and its benefits to the industry.
He also met with the cast and crew of ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ which opened in Manchester earlier this year, and has been touring the UK extensively. It opened at the Theatre Royal on 26 August.
Annie Get Your Gun
Produced by the Ambassador Theatre Group, parent company of the Theatre Royal Brighton, who are predicting an increase in new productions as a direct result of the tax relief.
The musical opened on 26 August at the Theatre Royal and is being produced by the Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG), the parent company of Brighton Theatre Productions which is anticipating an increased amount of new work as a direct result of the new tax relief.
The theatre tax relief is expected to benefit around 250 production companies a year helping support plays, musicals, opera, ballet, dance and circus productions.
Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said:
As part of the government’s long term economic plan, we are backing business and supporting enterprise.
The UK’s theatres make a valuable contribution to our economy and are home to some of the most innovative companies producing exciting and ground breaking new productions.
I want to make sure our theatres continue to thrive and the tax relief I have introduced reinforces the government’s support for this important industry.
We have successfully introduced tax reliefs to support the creative sectors, such as film, high-end TV, animation and video games.
This shows how targeted support can make a real difference in promoting British culture and the way the UK is viewed internationally and we are building on this with the new theatre tax relief.
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Sajid Javid, said:
This is great news. The performing arts are a British success story. They delight audiences, provide jobs and boost the economy.
These tax changes will help spread this success around the country by making it easier for great productions to tour, for the benefit of everybody.
Commenting on the Theatre Tax Relief, Sir Howard Panter and Rosemary Squire OBE, Joint CEO’s,Ambassador Theatre Group, who own and manage Theatre Royal Brighton, said:
“ATG fully supports the Chancellor’s Budget proposals to extend the creative sector tax-credit arrangements to include UK theatre production. The move is both recognition of the importance of theatre to the national economy and a vote of confidence in what is a world-beating industry.
The focus on incentives for regional touring is particularly welcome; touring productions are the lifeblood of the sector and generate significant cultural and economic impact around the country. Incentives like this will encourage a wider range and a greater volume of touring shows – delivering real benefits, not only to producers or those employed in the theatre industry, but to local authorities, businesses and communities throughout Britain.”
Tom Stoppard, playwright of Arcadia, said:
I’m delighted that a new tour of Arcadia, directed by the young, visionary Blanche McIntrye, is to take place next year reaching audiences across the whole of the UK.
The current challenges for regional theatre in the UK mean that a production of this scale and quality are very rarely toured.
I welcome the news that a new tour of Arcadia is to be one of the very first to take advantage of the new funding incentives for touring live performance which has directly helped realise the ambitious vision of this tour.
Announced at Autumn Statement 2013, the relief will provide an additional corporation tax deduction, or a payable tax credit, worth up to 25% of qualifying expenditure for touring productions and 20% for all other productions.
The UK theatre sector is a key attraction for tourism, with visiting tourists spending at least £856 million a year on arts and culture.