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May 29, 2015

Major arts companies throw little guys under the bus after Brandis’ shake-up

In the wake of Arts Minister George Brandis' audacious shake-up of arts funding, the cultural sector is on the brink of civil war.

Ben Eltham — <em>Crikey</em> arts commentator

Ben Eltham

Crikey arts commentator

Opera Australia CEO Craig Hassall

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8 comments

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8 thoughts on “Major arts companies throw little guys under the bus after Brandis’ shake-up

  1. jmendelssohn

    Only a few days before the budget, George Brandis was in Venice with the Chair and CEO of the Australia Council as well as many of this country’s leading arts philanthropists. On his own admission he did not find time to be courteous enough to forewarn any of them, even though he had ample opportunity.

  2. Buddy

    Divide and conquer is the coalitions favorite activity and they always favor the top end of town

  3. Norman Hanscombe

    In para 1 “Crikey understands”, in para 2 “We understand”, and in para 3 “Crikey understands”, that wicked things are taking place without us knowing about them. That’s certainly Crikey’s forte.
    Any wonder Crikey isn’t happy that the Australian Major Performing Arts Group (AMPAG) sent out a letter on May 20th in which it used “We understand” once only. To make matters worse they contained no hints of a dark plot when In para 1 “Crikey understands”, in para 2 “We understand”, and in para 3 “Crikey understands”, that wicked things are taking place without us knowing about them. That’s certainly Crikey’s forte.
    Any wonder Crikey isn’t happy that the Australian Major Performing Arts Group (AMPAG) sent out a letter on May 20th in which it used “We understand” once only. To make matters worse they contained no hints of a dark plot when they wrote, “We understand that the Australia Council and the Ministry are currently working on details of how the new program funding will be allocated.” That’s far to sober and neutral than the Crikey Commissariat would have liked.
    Crikey tells us that “Now, wild rumours are circulating through the arts sector.” That’s the sort of material Crikey adores. Perhaps because Crikey thought they’d used “we understand” a tad too much, They vary it with, “Several well-placed sources tell Crikey that much of that funding has already been promised to the major companies in handshake deals”, with a dash of colour by describing Opera Australia’s director, Lyndon Terracini as “charismatic”.
    And then we’re told, “Let’s recap” which warns readers we’re about to have déjà vu all over again.
    Jmendelssohn, what inside knowledge (as opposed to emotive prejudices) can you present to support your quaint assertion?

  4. A.Blot

    Brandis is operating his office more like the mafia than that of a government department. Even worse Brandis is also the Attorney-General.

  5. Peter Knight

    It’s time the majors made a statement. Either they support the changes made or they acknowledge how damaging they will be to Australia’s arts ecology. Silence is no longer acceptable.

  6. Blair Martin

    “In the end it is not the words of our enemies we remember but the silence of our friends.” MLKJnr

  7. Itsarort

    It’s very disappointing that Senate estimates just doesn’t call Brandis a liar.

    A few years ago some brave soul actually did state Brandis’ well known modus operandi for the public record and promptly found himself kicked out of the Party…

  8. Norman Hanscombe

    Anonymous Itsarort, why not name your claimed “brave soul” who apparently shares your quaint interpretation of the relevant facts, and for stating them, “promptly found himself kicked out of the Party.”
    If you can, please explain.

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