Music association outlines standards

The Cayman Music and Entertainment Association has published a set of requirements for vendors and venues hiring local bands.

President of the CMEA Blake Hurlstone explained that the new measures were an attempt to bring some level of consistency to doing business in the Cayman Islands’ entertainment industry.

The document outlines details such as, “The distance between electrical connections provided to the performance area and musical equipment should not exceed 10 feet. Any connections exceeding 10 feet require a suitable-sized electrical connection via a suitable sized connection box equipped with ground fault protection, as required under the National Electrical Code.

“Unsuitable electrical connections exposed to the elements may be harmful to musical equipment. The load rating of power provided to the performance area should be not less than (20 amps). It is the responsibility and in the best interest of employers/contractors of entertainment to ensure that the minimum acceptable electrical requirements are met. Employers providing unsatisfactory power to the performing area may be held responsible for any resulting damage to musical equipment”.

With regard to performance area, the CMEA has prescribed that, “Set up and performance areas should not be exposed to the elements, exposing the performer to open air or sunlight.

“Bright sunlight is unsuitable for performers and potentially damaging to musical equipment. During rainy periods, weather may be unpredictable so it is in the best interest of employers to provide either permanent or temporary shelter for performers and equipment. Employers may be held responsible for any damage to musical equipment under the mentioned circumstances,” the statement read.

Additionally, “Performance areas should be constructed of concrete, wood or hard surface materials. Uncovered ground, loose dirt, sand and grass are all unacceptable surfaces. In the case of temporary shelters, such as tents, should have optional side coverings. Any entertainer or band consenting to work in unsatisfactory conditions, do so at their own risk.”

Under the provisions of the Trade and Business Law (2007), all businesses including the provision of music and entertainment services can only be conducted by a legal entity possessing a licence to sell these services. Individuals or entities collecting monetary profits from bookings without holding a suitable licence to provide promotional services are in fault of the law. This includes bands, owners of bands or entertainment who may subcontract other entertainers.


“Promoters employing visiting entertainers must consult the Cayman Islands Immigration Department laws and procedures for the processing of Temporary Permit applications.

“Applications to the Immigration Department for Temporary Permit, which require review by the CMEA must be submitted in a timely manner. The CMEA review process of an application forwarded by the Immigration Department can take up to two to three weeks. It is therefore recommended that the applicant submit applications not less than five weeks prior to the scheduled event.

“CMEA’s review of other permit applications is a matter of both CMEA and Immigration Department policy. These policies are subject to change. Currently, the CMEA policy is to recommend approval of long term temporary entertainment permits (6 months only) during the high season (December to May).”

During the high tourist season, which runs from December to May, the recommended performance fees are minimum $200 per performer per hour. During the low tourist season, which runs from June to November, the recommended performance fees are minimum $150 per performer per hour. The minimum one-time performance fee is $250.00.

“Referenced performance fees are recommendations only and that all fees are negotiable between the entertainer and the employer,” noted the statement from the CMEA, which pointed out that the recommendations accounted for travel time, stage equipment work and stage equipment use and performance.

The statement noted that in relation to what the association called “toxic environments,” all employers and venue owners should abide by the provisions of the Cayman Islands Tobacco Law (2008) governing smoking in public places.

“Any entertainer or band consenting to work in unsatisfactory conditions does so at their own risk. Failure of a venue to adhere to applicable laws may be valid reason for a contracted entertainer to cancel performance and collect cancellation fees, as appropriate under the terms and conditions of their contract,” read the document.

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