Stars of music and film have given their backing to the campaign to save a beleaguered arts centre.
Watch a video of cinema manager Chris Bond urging people to save the arts centre and keep its vital funding:-
Mike Peters, the Prestatyn-born frontman of The Alarm, and Sara Sugarman, the Rhyl-born Hollywood director, have pledged their support for the Scala in Prestatyn, which announced this week that it could close within days if £20,000 is not found to pay staff wages.
Amid concern that a cut in council funding next year could also jeopardise the long-term future of the Scala, general manager Chris Bond has denied that the centre is a “white elephant” and says he aims to run the Scala without depending on grants.
Mike, who premiered the film he made with Sara at the Scala in 2013, said it would be a “tragedy” if the centre closed.
He said: “I’ve always loved going to the Scala as it holds special memories for me. It’s a place where imaginations are nurtured, inspired and developed.
“I played a gig there myself back in 1979, which was a watershed moment in my awakening as a musician.
“The Scala and their team were so helpful to Sara Sugarman and myself when we wanted to see how our film ‘Vinyl’ was looking in the early stages of development.
“The finished film benefitted so much from the production team seeing how it looked on a proper screen.
“The night we held a premiere for ‘Vinyl’ was a very special event, and wouldn’t have happened in the more corporate cinema chains.
“It would be a great shame and a tragedy for Prestatyn if the Scala were to fold.”
Sara said: “I really hope the Scala is kept open. It has been a hub for the community and it welcomed me as a local film maker. The arts are the soul of a nation – don’t let our nation lose its soul. Keep the Scala open!”
Although Mr Bond said the Scala has been “inundated” with support this week, he also answered some of the criticism from local people who said the centre should support itself and not rely on subsidy.
Mr Bond said: “The Scala is not a white elephant and is enjoyed by between 90,000 and 100,000 people a year. The national average of film attendance has dropped by over 10%, but the Scala’s attendances have had a small increase.
“The Scala cannot take too many risks with its programme, but is always trying new things. We are not asking the taxpayer to bail it out. The Scala has one of the smallest grants in Denbighshire for a cultural venue, and no other venue is getting its grant cut by 100%. The Scala is just asking for the same percentage cut as the other venues are receiving. It is the Scala’s aim to run without grants.”
A meeting of the Scala’s board of trustees will be held on Monday to discuss the centre’s future. A public meeting will then be held on Friday at 6pm at a venue which is yet to be decided.
Source (View the original article and videos): Daily Post Article 31.10.14 1641 By Rhodri Barker