The Espy, Torquay Hotel, The Barwon Club and Cherry Bar have all scored funding.
It looks like Victoria’s prized music industry will receive a massive boost this year with the Andrews Labor Government supporting music venues, musicians, businesses and workers to continue their road to recovery – sharing new music and live performances with audiences across the state.
Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson and Member for Albert Park Martin Foley today visited St Kilda’s iconic Espy Hotel to finally announce funding for the venue alongside almost $8 million in grants targetting all levels of the industry.
As part of this announcement, more than 130 Victorian music businesses, artists and venues will share in grants totalling around $3 million, supporting nearly 5,000 jobs in the industry as part of the Victorian Music Industry Recovery Program. Projects within this grant pool range from live events, such as indie promoter Penny Drop’s 10-day series at Malthouse Outdoor, to livestream events from the likes of DJs Vinyl Vixens – and include new work by artists including Isaiah Firebrace, Ella Hooper and many more.
The grants will support businesses and venues to make events COVIDSafe, kick start the creation of new music, and deliver state-wide tours, business development opportunities and digital initiatives right across Victoria.
In exciting news for the state, 68 music venues are also being supported to recover and rebound with nearly $5 million injected into Victoria’s iconic live music venues, as part of the final tranche of the Victorian Live Music Venues Program.
Supported venues included Melbourne’s Cherry Bar, Revolver Upstairs and Section 8, as well as regional venues like Geelong’s Barwon Club Hotel, Hepburn’s Palais, Torquay Hotel, the Guilford Hotel and Bendigo’s Golden Vine Hotel.
Seeing these venues recognised as part of the Victorian Live Music Venues Program is a huge relief, following the initial announcement last year where the Victorian Government announced $13million funding package for live music sector, dishing out $9million in grants for 106 live music venues across the state, to help them survive the lockdown period.
“This suite of funding will not only see revered venues like St Kilda’s iconic Espy become gig ready, it will also pave the way for a long list of venues, music businesses and artists to return to work in COVIDSafe ways,” says Member for Albert Park Martin Foley.
Rounding out the latest funding, more than $2.5 million will go to supporting the next round of Music Works grants, which will open for applications in the coming weeks. This will include a dedicated stream to support live music activity in regional and outer-metropolitan Victoria.
The Government has worked closely with the industry since the onset of the pandemic – providing almost $25 million in dedicated support.