State Sen. Brendan Crighton, Rep. Peter Capano, Rep. Dan Cahill announced that the Lynn Auditorium has been awarded $250,000 from Mass Cultural Council’s Gaming Mitigation Grant.
In this round of funding, 39 organizations will receive a total of $3,675,000, with individual awards ranging from $2,500 – $250,000. Grant amounts are based on a formula that considers the percentage of performances featuring touring artists, and the amount of fees paid to those artists.
“The Lynn Auditorium has brought countless artists and performances to the heart of our city for decades,” said Rep. Capano. “MCC’s Gaming Mitigation Grant will help ensure that the auditorium can continue to attract superb talent for years to come.”
In recent years, smaller nonprofit venues, local arts organizations and municipal auditoriums have been priced out of booking live talent due to competition from larger resort-style casinos. The casinos have an advantage as they can afford to pay higher talent fees and offer better amenities and accommodations to the artists such as luxury housing.
This state grant program provides money to these smaller venues to help be competitive in booking touring artists and entertainment. It was established by the Legislature in the Expanded Gaming Act and is funded through casino revenues (2% of revenues).
“Having top-tier shows at the Lynn Auditorium is a key driver in enriching our downtown area and spurring economic activity,” said Senator Crighton. “This funding will help us secure this premiere talent.”.
Rep. Cahill said that arts and culture are a vital part of the COVID-19 recovery.
“This money will go a long way to support the city’s effort to attract acts that will bring patrons to our restaurants,” said Cahill.
Lynn Auditorium’s Executive Director James Marsh thanked the legislature for including these provisions in the gaming law aimed at protecting mid-sized live entertainment venues like the Lynn Auditorium.
“We will certainly put these funds to good use and continue to secure topnotch talent here in Lynn,” Marsh said.
The Lynn Auditorium already has some headline artists booked this year including artists Nelly and Pitbull.
“The Lynn Auditorium has provided a sense of community for years and has continuously been a place to celebrate and entertain. We are fortunate to have the auditorium and we want to ensure that we are utilizing the auditorium to the best of our abilities,” said Mayor Nicholson. “This grant allows for further opportunities that will take Lynn to new heights.”