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Submissions open for 2021 Music Victoria Awards

We're back!

It’s that time of year again folks! The Music Victoria Awards are back, announcing their triumphant return in 2021 with submissions now open for the 17th annual instalment. Every year the Music Victoria Awards looks back on the incredible achievements of the Victorian music community over the previous 12 months, and despite 2020 being one of the toughest years the sector has ever seen, there is still plenty to celebrate.

What's new in 2021?

A lot has happened since last year’s Awards, and Music Victoria would like to announce some new changes that come into effect this year. Firstly, the board would like to thank Awards founder and former CEO, Patrick Donovan for his outstanding work growing the Awards over the past 16 years, and welcome Music Victoria’s new CEO, Simone Schinkel to the role. A professional arts leader, Simone brings with her a celebrated reputation for strategic sector development, and a commitment to equity and justice, and she looks forward to celebrating with the local music community at her debut Music Victoria Awards this November.

“I’ve really tried to spend my early days in the role listening to the industry and I am delighted to introduce some changes in 2021, based on what I have been hearing. As part of our commitment to continual improvement we have refined our awards criteria, categories and judging processes which we believe will more accurately reflect and reward the diverse music community in Victoria. A Music Victoria Award nomination results in increased promotion, recognition and attention on your music, career, venue or festival – we encourage our members to get involved.
~ Simone Schinkel, Music Victoria CEO

Changes to the awards

  • A brand new category for Best Pop Act
  • All genre categories will now be assessed on the act rather than album, with the requirement that nominees have released at least multiple recordings (ie. songs, works, pieces) between 1 July 2020 – 30 June 2021
  • You must be a paid Music Victoria member to be on the longlist or to nominate your favourite music act, venue, festival, producer or woman in music
  • Artists can only be nominated in 1 genre category (if they self-nominated - the category they have chosen takes precedence over a judge's nomination of them in another genre)

How to nominate

To nominate you simply need to have an active paid membership of Music Victoria.

Each paid membership (starting at $77 or $33 concession) allows one nomination per team member, with higher-tiered memberships able to submit multiple nominations (as they have more team members associated with their membership fee).

Submissions for the 2021 Music Victoria Awards are now open until midnight Tuesday 20 July. Sign up as a paid member if you aren’t already and make your submission today.

Paid members can submit their entry or nomination here.
Not a member yet? Sign up here.

The categories for submission are:

Music Victoria Industry Awards:

  • Best Producer *$1000 voucher to spend on Yamaha gear sponsored by Yamaha
  • Outstanding Woman In Music
  • Best Festival
  • Best Venue (under 500 capacity)
  • Best Venue (over 500 capacity)
  • Best Regional and Outer Suburban Venue (under 50 gigs per year) *$3000 cash prize sponsored by Bendigo Bank
  • Best Regional and Outer Suburban Venue (over 50 gigs per year) *$3000 cash prize sponsored by Bendigo Bank

Music Victoria Awards:

  • Best Blues Act
  • Best Country Act
  • Best Electronic Act
  • Best Experimental or Avant-Garde Act
  • Best Folk Act
  • Best Heavy Act
  • Best Hip Hop Act
  • Best Intercultural (previously Global) Act
  • Best Jazz Act
  • Best Pop Act
  • Best Reggae and Dancehall Act
  • Best Rock/Punk Act
  • Best Soul, Funk, R'n'B or Gospel Act
  • Archie Roach Foundation Award for Emerging Talent (for First Nations acts) *$3000 cash prize sponsored by the Archie Roach Foundation
  • Best Regional/Outer Suburban Act *$3000 cash prize sponsored by Bendigo Bank

The remaining categories (Best Band, Best Album, Best Song, Best Solo Artist, Best Musician, Best Breakthrough Act, Best Live Act) will be nominated by an expert industry panel and open to public voting in October. Last year’s inaugural Outstanding Woman in Music Award will once again be voted upon by the Music Victoria Board.

Eligibility Criteria

  • For music categories - at least 50% of the act has been living in Victoria for the last two years or uses Melbourne as a home base. If you are performing under a solo artist name, you must reside in Victoria to be eligible (residency of backing band is not considered).
  • For the producer category - Must have created or produced multiple recordings released between 1 July 2020 - 30 June 2021
  • For the festival and venue categories - Ran a music festival or music venue in Victoria between 1 July 2020 - 30 June 2021
  • For the venue, festival and live act categories - in light of the COVID-19 crisis, these categories will accept live streaming activity from Victorian venues, festivals and artists in the eligible time period.

Music Victoria acknowledges the rich contributions made by people from a variety of backgrounds to the Victorian contemporary music scene. These Awards are our chance to capture, celebrate and reward the great music that has been made here in the past year.

We aim to have a diverse group of people acknowledged as part of these awards and as such, we strongly encourage applications by First Nations people, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, Deaf and Disabled people, and people from the LGBTIQA+ community.

Submit now!

Submissions are now open until midnight Tuesday 20 July. Shortlists will be published in September, with nominee announcements to follow soon after.

Paid members can submit their entry or nomination here.
Not a member yet? Sign up here.


Music Victoria thanks Major Partners Bendigo Bank, City Of Melbourne, Creative Victoria and Melbourne Recital Centre, and Event Partners Brick Lane, Channel 31 and Moshtix for their ongoing support of the Music Victoria Awards.