Friend Calling for Broader Guidance for Performing Arts Venues to Help Upstate Artists and Communities Recover

Assemblyman Christopher S. Friend (R,C,I-Big Flats) is calling on the Cuomo administration to provide guidance so established arts venues may safely reopen to hold live performances. The Assemblyman supports the push to reengage the arts; however, he feels the governor’s reliance on stadium-sized venues falls short of helping artists, venue owners and communities throughout the entirety of the state and severely limits access to the arts to those who live in major cities.

“The rich culture of art in our communities is one of the qualities that sets New York state apart from the rest, but the governor’s plan, thus far, is limiting. I urge him to provide guidance so performing arts venues throughout the entire state may open safely,” said Friend. “Access to the arts in all regions of the state, especially here in the Southern Tier, will aid in economic recovery and improve the mental wellbeing of residents who have been through so much in the past year. The arts are for everyone. Let’s make sure in planning for our pandemic recovery we hold fast to this value.”

The governor has outlined polices which would allow large arena sports venues to open for sporting events and other entertainment events. Large cities, which are able to house large venues such as the Barclay Center, are at a great advantage with the governor’s policies. Friend believes this is an issue of parity for smaller upstate cities and communities.