Music Victoria is thrilled that the State Government has supported our live music rescue package to help Victorian live music venues through this crisis. Music Victoria has been meeting with venue owners weekly since the shutdown forced closures on Friday March 13, collecting data and articulating issues and priorities to local, state and federal governments.
Friday’s announcement that Creative Victoria would be providing $15 million in grants to venues across the state with a capacity of 50 to 1200 people that have a "reputation for presenting original live music” was, as expected, very well received by Victorian venues.
''Like other venue owners, we were extremely relieved to see this support package announcement from the State of Victoria. Venues are the backbone of Melbourne's thriving and world-renowned music scene, and our survival will be absolutely critical to the recovery of the music industry as a whole. We thank the Labor Government for recognising the role venues play and for supporting us and our families as we work through the many challenges ahead,’’ said a regional venue owner.
''This announcement is very much the difference between survival and disaster,’’ said another venue owner.
''Due to COVID, it is obviously impossible for us to stage live music events, and it is only government funding that will keep our industry alive," said another.
Applications will open on 16 July and close at 5pm, 6 August. Further details on the program are available on the Creative Victoria website with full available in the coming days. Next week, Music Victoria and the VMDO will be holding an information session for venue owners so stay tuned for details.
This comes on top of a four year national $20 million Live Music Program to be rolled out by the Federal Government soon, as well as various grants from local governments, the Australia Council and organisations such as APRA/AMCOS and PPCA.
Creative Victoria are still developing the previously announced $4 million that will help support musicians and industry workers who have lost gigs and employment due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Thank you to Premier Daniel Andrews, Creative Industries Minister Martin Foley and the Creative Victoria team, Treasurer Tim Pallas, former Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation Marlene Kairouz, Reason Party MP Fiona Patten and all of their advisors for listening and appreciating the importance of this support in protecting our world famous live music venues.
The industry has never been so united, and we thank everyone who has worked so hard on collecting data and preparing proposals, including the National Live Music Office and the passionate bookers in lobby group Save Our Scene who organised the largest ever e-petition tabled in Parliament urging the government to deliver Music Victoria’s proposal. Also, a shout out to Music Victoria members Dobe Newton and Adrian Furby for their assistance in building the case for support. We are continuing to talk to the Government about planning protection for venues and hope an announcement will be made shortly.
While this announcement provides a ray of light for the music industry, the path to recovery is far from over and Music Victoria will continue to work closely with the community to support and grow the incredible scene we have. For venues, Music Victoria and the VMDO have prepared a Guidance Note to help live music venues reopen and navigate their operations when it is safe to do so.