An investment of about £9 million is needed to save 100 Off-West End theatres, a report has claimed.
The figure has been calculated by OffWestEnd.com, which is urging the government for more support for smaller, independent theatres.
OffWestEnd.com estimates 20% of independent and fringe theatres in London will not survive lockdown, leaving about 100 venues or 110 spaces.
The report estimates the total loss of income over the course of six months post-lockdown compared to the previous year will be £7.6 million for 100 venues if average theatre capacity is 50%, or £9.2 million if average capacity is one in three people.
This is mainly due to theatres being likely to have a reduced capacity due to social distancing measures and an unwillingness for some audience members to attend immediately, as well as some venues feeling the need to discount tickets in order to encourage patrons to return.
The post-lockdown loss is in addition to an estimated £13.3 million lost by the venues from March to September this year.
The report says: "Theatre is an ecosystem and the smaller, independent fringe theatres across London play a huge role in helping to nurture and sustain theatre as a whole.
"Off-West End theatre will need support post lockdown – alongside other theatres across the UK – and this report analyses the needs and identifies the amount required.
"We hope government and other bodies will carefully consider the arguments made in this report – and in other documents submitted by organisations such as UK Theatre – and respond positively in order to enable the theatre sector to survive the impact of Covid-19."
The report follows a survey released last week by OffWestEnd.com, which found that almost two thirds of fringe theatregoers say they want to see extra protective measures to entice them back to venues post-lockdown.