The Slovak cultural sector is experiencing truly hard times. From the beginning of the pandemic until now, the government failed to take any relevant steps to mitigate the consequences and financial losses brought about by the suspension of cultural activities of all kinds. Tens of thousands of people have been unable to fully practice their professions since March, even though the majority of them have not received any financial assistance from the state.

Cultural centres and their executives courageously held out in the first phase  of the pandemic under the prospect of a relaunch of activities at the end of this critical year. However, this idea faded with the onset of the second wave, and, with it, the competent authorities’ ignorance of the cultural sphere, as well as the aggressive arrogance of the general public, which began to express itself on social networks at any mention of financial assistance for artists.

The Slovak Institute is mapping the impact of emergency measures in the field of theatre
In response to the current situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Slovak Theatre Institute has created a short survey to map to impact of the emergency measures on the independent arts sector. Respondents are asked to estimate the number of performances and events they have had to cancel due to the quarantine now in place and to describe the impact they expect the emergency measures to have on their theatre or organisation during and after the quarantine period. The survey also askes whether the state should compensate arts organisations, in whole, or in part, for losses sustained due to the pandemic. Finally, the survey asks for information on any initiatives begun to support artists during this period. The Slovak Theatre Institute is also planning a number of further support measures, including focus groups and panel discussions, that will go ahead once the situation has stabilised.