Sounds Australia still eligible for Catalyst funding?
The Federal Government has finally responded after the Australian and international music industry responded with anger at its cutting of Catalyst funding for export development initiative Sounds Australia.
A Change.org petition calling on the Government to change its decision received 4000 signatures.
Initially the trade body was told it would not receive funding after January 2017.
Today, Minister for the Arts Mitch Fifield said that it was re-evaluating Sounds Australia’s funding through Catalyst.
“The Catalyst fund supports arts and culture projects,” Fifield told The Music Network. “Some elements of Sounds Australia may be eligible for Catalyst funding, however, the current funding for Sounds Australia is program funding. As with all Government investments in fixed period programs, the outcomes from Sounds Australia funding will be evaluated and inform any future funding decisions.”
Set up in 2009, Sounds Australia has helped 619 acts at 48 trade events in 52 cities in 19 countries that it identified as gateways to the international marketplace. Not only did the international presence of Courtney Barnett, Chet Faker and Vance Joy started at Big Sound showcases, while the association said that top-tier Australian acts had a 300% growth of earnings within the three years since their first Big Sound international gig.
Artist managers said that the likes of Hungry Kids of Hungary, DZ Deathrays, The John Steel Singers, The Creases, Velociraptor and Jeremy Neale would never have been possible without Sounds Australia’s showcase gigs, networking and marketing facilitating record, agency and publishing deals as well as slots on festivals and tours.
Part of Sounds Australia’s funding has also come from the Australia Council for the Arts. But the funding organisation has also cut back on much of its funding after the Federal Government slashed its budget by millions of dollars. It will announce its next funding round on Monday. But the ABC has reported that its financial support for the export body “is now also up in the air”.
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