Interview: Chris Zacher of the National Independent Venue Association

Interview: Chris Zacher of the National Independent Venue Association


You’ve heard it before. It bears repeating. The concert industry has been the first to close during the 2020 pandemic and is setting up to be the very last to open. With such a precarious state of affairs, the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) is putting together the Save Our Stages Fest on YouTube, taking place on October 16, 17, and 18. It’s free to watch the entire festival with donations encouraged throughout the three-day showcase.

All the money raised during the festival will go to the emergency relief fund set up by NIVA to continue to support live music and independent venues across the country.  

Colorado’s Chris Zacher has worked around the clock in recent weeks to set up the virtual benefit festival. Zacher is the CEO and Executive Director at Levitt Pavilion, a lecturer at UC Denver, and a committee chair at NIVA. 

Given the state of live music, it’s hard to imagine a more important benefit taking place to save venues and music scenes. “Ninety percent of venues have two months before they close their doors completely,” Zacher said in our interview. 

Watch the festival beginning at 6 p.m. on October 16 and donate to NIVA’s emergency relief fund any time

Nathaniel Rateliff and The Lumineers will be performing their sets from the Boulder Theater.