Before the show
1. Make sure that you have a written performance agreement with the venue before the show. The venue will normally arrange this, but if they don’t, write one yourself and give it to the venue to sign. At a minimum, the performance agreement should outline:
- The performance date, your performance fee and terms of payment, load-in and sound-check times, playing times and support acts
- Whether you or the venue are responsible for providing a sound technician
- Fees for venue hire or per paying customer
- Door deal and band rider (food and drinks)
See the following link for a good example:
2. Ask venue management whether they have any special requirements for live performances at their venue.
3. Establish who will be responsible for promoting the show.
4. Provide the venue with your press kit for their website:
- Hi res 300dpi photo
- Short bio (100 words)
- Video footage via youtube link
- Social media links
5. Make sure that the venue has your poster at least a month prior to the show.
6. If you are using an in-house sound technician, call them at least a week before the show to confirm load-in and sound-check times and provide them with your stage plot.
On the Night
1. At the start of the event, it is respectful to offer an ‘Acknowledgement of Country’ or if budget allows, book an elder from the local area to perform a ‘Welcome to Country’. For more information, see pg 74.
2. If you are headlining the show, make sure your support acts know what time they are required to be at the venue and when they need to be on and off the stage. It is your responsibility to ensure the night runs on time.
3. If you are a support act, play within the prescribed set times.
4. If the venue doesn’t provide a door person you will need to organise your own.
5. Set up your merchandise table and check that the bar staff is aware of your rider requirements.
6. Be aware that the venue may wish to settle the door takings on the night.
7. Keep noise to a minimum when loading out to avoid disturbing the venue’s neighbours.
After the show
1. Send a tax invoice with your ABN to the venue booker. Generally, a 14-day settlement term is standard. If you were treated well by the staff and had a great show, make sure to express your gratitude.
2. Here is a Tax Fact Sheet that may help you to decide how you wish to set up your band or solo act and whether requirements such as GST are applicable to you: www.amin.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/AMIN-Tax-Pack.pdf
3. If your compositions are original, remember to lodge a live performance return with the Australian Performing Right Association (APRA).
Acknowledgement Of Country and Welcome to Country Resources
A Welcome to Country ceremony is performed by Aboriginal Traditional Owners for people visiting their Country. An Acknowledgement Of Country is a respectful way to acknowledge the traditional land owners and can be delivered by anyone, Indigenous or non-Indigenous. The resources below provide further information on best practices in this area.
Aboriginal Victoria protect Aboriginal cultural heritage, promote the advancement of Treaty and self determination, and deliver programs to strengthen Aboriginal communities.
Welcome to Country and Acknowledgements Map
Victoria has a strong and proud Aboriginal history, and complex ownership and land stewardship systems stretching back many thousands of years. This map may be used as a reference along with other community resources in each region. Ongoing consultation with communities is important to identify key personnel for any particular region.
Common Ground is designed to build a foundational level of knowledge, through sharing First Nations Cultures, Histories and lived experiences. It’s a go-to resource for those wanting to learn more and connect with our First Peoples.
Indigenous Protocols And The Arts by Terri Janke and Company
Indigenous Cultural Protocols and the Arts is a book of case studies that are based around the Australia Council of the Arts Indigenous Protocols.
Indigenous Cultural Protocols and the Arts includes:
Principles of the Protocols, Artform Specific Case Studies, Checklist for working with Indigenous people and content, Examples of Forms e.g: Community approval form.
Download sample documents here
Arts Law Centre of Australia (ALCA)
The ALCA is a not-for-profit company that provides legal advice and information on a range of arts related matters, including contracts, copyright, defamation, insurance and taxation.
Australian Music Industry Network (AMIN)
AMIN advocates on the behalf of its members and state and territory music industry associations. The AMIN website features several handy fact sheets and checklists for both venues and musicians.
Visit amin.org.au For fact sheets and checklists, go to Projects > Music Industry Legal Pack
LISTEN exists to spark and cultivate a conversation from a feminist perspective around the experiences of marginalised people in Australian music. LISTEN also work closely with SLAM on the Live Music Sexual Harassment Taskforce.
Live Performance Australia (LPA)
LPA is the peak body for Australia’s live entertainment and performing arts industry. LPA’s activities centre around workplace relations, policy and strategy, and membership services and events. The LPA website includes useful links to industry codes and guidelines, including Safety Guidelines for the Entertainment Industry.
Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA)
The MEAA is a union and professional organisation that covers people working in the media, entertainment, sports and arts industries. The MEAA offers a range of services to members, including legal advice and industrial representation.
Music Victoria is the peak body for the Victorian music industry; an independent and non-partisan body established to support the Victorian contemporary music industry across all genres. Music Victoria has a wealth of information for musicians, including links and resources regarding grants and funding, education and training, and legal and financial advice.
Musician’s Union Australia (MUA)
The MUA provides a range of services for its members, including free copyright and contract advice, free legal and financial advice, and discounted instrument and equipment insurance.