While cities like Chicago are ruthlessly taxing clubs for not booking “live cultural performances,” Germany’s Berghain Nightclub has just been dubbed a cultural event center, earning protection from outdated tax legislation.
The problem lies in the formal definition of fine art, which some authorities still cling to:
“Any of the disciplines which are commonly regarded as part of the fine arts, such as live theater, music, opera, drama, comedy, ballet, modern or traditional dance, and book or poetry readings.”
Now, after a lengthy battle with German tax authorities, the Berlin-Brandenburg fiscal court in Cottbus ruled that events at Berghain are indeed cultural events and are to be taxed like classical cultural events from now on. As a result the club will only be subject to a 7% culture tax instead of the more than double 19% entertainment tax.
This is a massive step forward for dance music and nightclubs around the world, gaining legal backing which defines these events as cultural, and not simply entertainment. In the meantime, we’ll just have sit tight as Chicago, the birthplace of house music, fails to realize its own cultural significance.
H/T Electronic Beats