Gender Pay Gap - The gender pay gap in the cultural sector has increased for the second year running and is now wider than the overall UK gender pay gap, latest figures reveal. Data published by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport last month shows an estimated gender pay gap of 15.2% in the cultural sector as of April 2023, up from 14.2% the previous year. This means that for every £1 men were paid, women were paid just under 85 pence.
This disparity is greater than the average gender pay gap for all employees in the UK, which stood at 14.2% as of April 2023. The culture sector includes performing arts, literature, visual arts, public broadcasting, museums and galleries, libraries and the visual arts. The data marks the second successive year of increase in the gender pay gap in these industries. Between April 2021 and April 2022, the gap increased by 3.1 percentage points, before increasing a further 1 percentage point to reach 15.2% by April 2023.
By contrast, the gender pay gap in creative industries such as film, publishing and music has decreased by 4.3 percentage points from 2022, albeit from higher levels. It now stands at 17.1% as of April 2023. The statistics follow a meeting about gender discrimination in theatre that called on Arts Council England to counteract a number of obstacles to women in theatre and establish a gender advisory board.
Back In Brighton - A total of five Eurovision winners performed on the stage where Abba won the contest exactly 50 years ago. On 6 April 1974 the then-unknown Swedish group stormed to victory at Brighton Dome performing Waterloo.
The concert, entitled Gold, formed the centrepiece of a "weekend of music, dance and family entertainment inspired by the Swedish supergroup", a venue spokesperson said. The concert, in the Dome's Concert Hall on Saturday, has been described as "an evening of Abba’s greatest hits and more music from the Eurovision songbook". There was also a dance party in the venue's Studio Theatre and a craft workshop to make hand puppets of the Swedish Super Troupers throughout the weekend.
Andrew Comben, chief executive of Brighton Dome, said Eurovision 1974 has had a huge impact on the city and the venue. He said: "Tourists come in large numbers on a pilgrimage to visit the Dome and the city as a whole and attend our gigs. The legacy of Eurovision 1974 is still being felt in Brighton. We are an open, inclusive city. It feels right that Abba had their Eurovision victory here."
Kiss Goodbye - Hard rock band Kiss has sold its back catalogue of songs to a Swedish music investor for a figure thought to be upwards of $300m (£237m). Stockholm-based Pophouse Entertainment also bought the group's brand, likeness and intellectual property. The sale marks the band's retirement from live performances on their End of the Road World Tour.
Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen have also sold their back catalogues for multi-million dollar figures. Both artists sold to big music houses for $500m (£395m) and $450m (£355m) respectively. Although details of the Kiss deal have not been revealed it is understood to be similar to that of the British band Genesis, but less than the back catalogue sale of Michael Jackson's work ($600m/£474m).
However, Pophouse will own not just the rights to the music but the entire Kiss brand, including intellectual property sales, which will allow the Swedish firm to generate future AI-generated content. The company, which previously collaborated with Kiss on a digital avatar project in December last year, also produced the Abba Voyage concerts based on a similar principle.
(Jim Evans)
9 April 2024

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