We thank Mr Jeffrey Say Seck Leong for his views on arts spaces (Arts companies need permanent homes to grow, July 28).
We agree that independent arts companies are part of a diverse, vibrant landscape. The Necessary Stage, Intercultural Theatre Institute and The Substation are established major companies which play different roles in our arts landscape and are well recognised by audiences and the arts community.
The National Arts Council's (NAC) approach to arts spaces has always been customised and we will continue to find ways to support them in the work they do, while balancing the larger needs of the whole ecosystem.
The NAC's subsidised arts spaces have grown almost fivefold since 1985, but demand continues to exceed supply, with open calls for tenancies oversubscribed.
Under our five-year SG Arts Plan, the NAC will unlock more public and private spaces by developing co-location strategies and shared facilities, so as to match demand and best support and sustain our arts community and talents in the long term.
Not surprisingly, with the current Covid-19 crisis, revenue and fund raising have been severely impacted and the flexibility of hiring spaces on a pay-per-use basis will make economic sense for many arts companies.
Beyond the pandemic, for long-term sustainability of the scene, the NAC will step up efforts to approach corporate and community partners to alleviate the shortage of subsidised arts spaces.
This will also help create more options and opportunities for independent arts groups, both established and newly created.
Yeoh Phee Suan
and Digital Strategy
National Arts Council