Now that the world is slowly starting to return to some sense of normality, one of the first things we’re all desperate to do is experience live music again. The emotional thrill and almost cathartic buzz of a live orchestra is impossible to truly replicate at home. It’s a joy that’s been delighting audiences for hundreds of years and now, finally, we might be able to start enjoying concerts again surrounded by our fellow music lovers.
While we are all very excited to return to the stage for live performances, we must be mindful that many orchestras’ activities (and therefore risks) may have changed significantly, after some agile adaptation in the face of the pandemic – so their insurance needs a thorough review to ensure it provides all the right financial protection under the “new normal”. Some orchestras have ventured into streaming and other digital performance models; others have developed digital outreach programs. And cyber risk has hit the headlines during the pandemic as a key area of organizational vulnerability. At La Playa, we are proud to specialize in the performing arts sector, providing our clients with custom insurance solutions to meet their specific needs.
But orchestra insurance is not just about the valuable instruments on stage. What if your plane is delayed, causing you to miss a performance? What if instruments are damaged in transit? What if a soloist cancels moments before the performance is due to start? A major donor’s credit card details are hacked? These are all eventualities for which our orchestra insurance is designed for.
What insurance do orchestras need?
Orchestras could theoretically get insurance from any general brokerage, but it takes a specialist to understand the fine tuning required so that the coverage fits like a glove – full protection for some very specific property (from Stradivarius instruments to music libraries) and for liabilities they are exposed to on a global basis; without paying for cover you don’t really need. Unless you work with a specialist broker, you could end up with multiple policies overlapping and spiralling premiums for an insurance program that doesn’t really make much sense. Or, worse still, a gap in coverage.
A specialist insurance broker with a proven track record looking after orchestras, meanwhile, will know exactly how to handle everything from cancelled shows to international contractual liabilities. They will also understand exactly how to weight the coverage, and advise at what level to insure:
- Equipment including instruments, sheet music, computers and audio-visual gear. There will also be programmes and other merchandise to consider.
- Cancellation insurance including loss of earnings for the orchestra if they’re unable to play due to illness or travel disruption.
- Consequential Loss insurance to protect income streams during physical and technological disruptions (fire, flood, power & telecommunications failure)
- General liability cover for compensation payments arising from damage to third party property or personal injury
- Errors & omissions: helping to defend you against allegations of libel, slander, infringement of copyright, breach of confidentiality
- Directors’ & Officers’ Liability: protecting decision-makers against alleged mismanagement of the organization
- Travel & Touring insurance covering trip cancellation, medical expenses, passport replacement, loss of baggage
- Workers’ compensation – which covers not only the orchestra but everyone who works behind the scenes to make it a reality: tour managers, technicians, volunteers, interns…
Orchestra insurance is not just about the coverage – it’s about the advice behind it, structuring the protection for optimal performance so it delivers on its promise when you need it to. At La Playa, we have decades of experience in advising orchestras – just contact us to talk through your insurance.
Let the music play on
There are a thousand things that can go wrong in an orchestra rehearsal. But when it comes to live performance, the show must go on – and you need expert advice and support behind you.