Flemish musicians release Lés Miserables cover to protest government cutbacks in culture sector
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    Flemish musicians release Lés Miserables cover to protest government cutbacks in culture sector

    The recording of the cover is accompanied online by the hashtag #thisisourculture. Credit: Sofie De Schryver/Facebook.

    Flemish musicians released online on Friday morning a recording of them singing a cover from Lés Miserables to protest against government cutbacks in the culture sector.

    The cover surfaced online on Facebook at around 6:00 AM on Friday morning.

    The recording shows around 90 people, old and young, singing in the hall of the performing arts theatre, Fakkelteater Rode Zaal, in Antwerp.

    The Flemish government announced on 9 November a plan to spend 60% less on culture and heritage, a cutback that will significantly impact the availability of project grants. The decision has prompted criticism from members of Flanders’ cultural sector.

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    “Cancelling 60% of grants in the cultural sector will silence a whole new generation of artists,” a written message accompanying the Facebook post of the cover explains.

    “The musical sector of Flanders is solidarity with everyone who is touched by this policy,” the post adds.

    The idea of recording the cover reportedly arose during a demonstration by representatives of the culture sector that took place on 14 November outside the Flemish parliament, VRT explains.

    Evie McCullough
    The Brussels Times