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Rekindling the Spark Between Artists and Audiences

A group of delegates and artists crowded in a marketplace-type venue.
Delegates and artists visiting the Canadian booth at internationale tanzmesse nrw in September 2022. Photo credit: Gillian Reid

Over the past three years, the federal government has been particularly responsive to the demands of the performing arts sector: additional funding for broadcasting and music, emergency funding, as well as stimulus and re-opening funds. Although some of this exceptional support is set to expire, segments of it deserve to be enhanced and made permanent, according to the Canadian Association for the Performing Arts (CAPACOA).

CAPACOA submitted its brief to the Standing Committee on Finance on October 7 as part of the pre-budget consultations for the 2023 budget.

The brief is based on extensive analysis of economic indicators, historical data on broadcast funding and research on cultural participation. Its recommendations echo those of another brief submitted in July during consultations on tourism.

Summary of recommendations

Base programming support

  • Make permanent the two-year supplementary investments in the Canada Arts Presentation Fund (CAPF) and the Building Communities through Arts and Heritage (BCAH) program, first announced in the 2019 budget and extended in the 2021 budget.
  • Invest an additional $30 million per year in these two programs ($21 million for CAPF and $9 million for BCAH) to support the adaptation and growth of the live performance sector in the post-pandemic era.

A digital infrastructure to connect audiences to live performances

  • Invest $10 million over five years to accelerate the development of an open data infrastructure for the live performance sector.


  • Modernize the employment insurance program to ensure self-employed workers in the arts sector can receive income support when they need it.

Updated: February 10, 2023

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