State government injects $10 million into live music

May 5, 2024 BY

At least 25 per cent of the funding available through the state government's new live music grant programs will be allocated to events in regional Victoria. Photo: FACEBOOK/TENT POLE FESTIVAL

VICTORIA’S live music venues and festivals are set to receive a financial boost of $10 million from the state government over the next four years.

State minister for creative services, Colin Brooks, last month announced the launch of two new grant programs, to be delivered by Music Victoria, aimed at creating more paid opportunities for local musicians and ensuring music festivals survive.

A minimum of 25 per cent of the funding provided through both programs is slated for live music venues and festivals in regional Victoria.

The Live Music Festivals Fund will provide grants of up to $50,000 to established festival organisers to help them stage new or existing events, while the Victorian Gig Fund, with the goal of creating 10,000 gigs, will provide grants of up to $10,000 to live music venues to help cover artists’ fees.

Mr Brooks said Victoria’s music venues and festivals were the lifeblood of many communities across the state.

“During a period of change for Australia’s live music industry, we are backing Victorian festivals and venues through these new programs – supporting the businesses that are the backbone of Australia’s live music heartland,” he said.

The funding announcement follows the recent cancellations of several long-standing and high-profile music festivals, including Groovin’ the Moo and the Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival, as rising cost of living continues to impact both ticket sales and the operational costs of staging events.

Locally, music festivals have also been feeling the pinch.

This year brought with it the cancellation of Tent Pole: A Musical Jamboree and boutique music and arts festival Meadow.

Meanwhile, Queenscliff by the Pier refunded tickets for their 2023 event and the iconic Falls Festival took time off to “rest, recover and recalibrate”.

Music Victoria chief executive Simone Schinkel recognised the economic challenges facing the state’s live music sector.

“With pressure continuing to mount on all sides, these initiatives are also desperately needed.

“Music Victoria is delighted to be the delivery partner, ensuring that even more dollars can make it directly into the industry and quickly, for the benefit of all Victorians.”

Applications for both the Live Music Festivals Fund and the Victorian Gig Fund will close at 2pm on Friday, May 17.

For more information, or to apply, head to musicvictoria.com.au

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