Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

News

LA Comedy Theaters Use Paycheck Protection Bailout To Get Low-Cost Loans

5d164290ca5dee000ae1b844-eight.jpg
Onstage at a classic New York Del Close Marathon. (Francine Daveta, courtesy UCB)
Stories like these are only possible with your help!
You have the power to keep local news strong for the coming months. Your financial support today keeps our reporters ready to meet the needs of our city. Thank you for investing in your community.

The federal government's Paycheck Protection Program's stated intention was to help small businesses keep people on staff through loans that would be forgiven if those companies used at least 60% of the money on payroll. But many businesses have used the opportunity to take government money as low-cost loans instead, including L.A. comedy theaters like the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, which received between $350,000 and $1 million for its L.A. theater/training center and a similar amount for its New York City location.

The NYC theater closed shortly after UCB was approved for that loan, while L.A.'s theater didn't hire back its staff. The list of who received PPP loans was released last week, and it included comedy outlets like UCB, the Groundlings, the Comedy Store, the Laugh Factory, and Flappers in Burbank.

The news didn't go over well online, with numerous people going after UCB on social media, including former performers, staff, and more. This follows ongoing financial issues at UCB, as well as complaints of systemic racism and inequality within the organization that prompted UCB to announce the formation of a diverse board taking over management of the theater's operations, as well as the theater looking to become a nonprofit.

READ THE FULL STORY:

Support for LAist comes from

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily coronavirus newsletter. To support our nonprofit public service journalism: Donate now.