Port Phillip Council is offering up to $5000 per week in live music grants for venues and promoters that have cancelled gigs due to Melbourne's lockdown.
In welcome news for struggling live music venues and promoters in Melbourne’s south, the Port Phillip Council are offering up to $5000 per week to pay cancelled artists and staff until the end of 2021.
The grant announcements are part of Port Phillip Council’s ‘Please Don’t Stop the Music’ lockdown assistance scheme. The council will also pay artist fees for eligible venues that are hiring musicians until December 31. The grants operate on a standard rate of $250 per musician, per performance.
What you need to know
- Please Don’t Stop the Music is a council scheme offering $5000 grants to music venues and promoters
- The grants are for artists and crew booked from now until December 31
- The council’s rate is $250 per musician, per performance. Applications open September 2.
Catch up on the latest music interviews, news and reviews here.
This is the first announcement from the council’s Live Music Action Plan. Port Phillip Mayor, Louise Crawford, says the assistance is the first of its kind in Australia. The scheme’s funding is being redirected from this year’s cancelled St Kilda Festival.
“Live music is a massive part of our City, whether it’s iconic venues, amazing artists and well-loved events,” Cr Crawford said. “Lockdowns have taken a huge toll on the live music industry – as well as the sectors it benefits such as hospitality. We’re doing what we can through our LMAP to make a real difference at this incredibly challenging time. We’re also continuing our efforts to become the first Victorian council to develop live music precincts to encourage live music while protecting amenity.”
Pat Pierce, half of the indie-folk Pierce Brothers band and a Port Phillip resident, said: “The lockdowns are absolutely necessary, but this time around it’s really starting to sting now for us and other musos I talk with. Live music is the voice of this town and it’s important for people to be able to start seeing the live talent when they can. The Council’s LMAP will help venues and musos by providing some certainty and support.”
Co-owner of St Kilda’s MEMO Music Hall, Simon Myers, reiterated his support for the grants. “Council’s financial support sends a clear message to artists that they are valued and will definitely assist in maintaining confidence in booking music in venues. Consistently rescheduling shows, without knowing whether they will actually go ahead, has a financial cost – and also can cost the audience’s confidence. If live performances are cancelled, a contribution to the artists, crew and venue will also alleviate some financial hardship.”
Port Phillip artists are encouraged to register for the council’s database, which will be used to allocate funding, and is available at the council’s live music website here.