Peter Garrett, DJ Trixie Mattell, Alex Lahey lead Melbourne’s 10-day free SoundBox pop-up

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Peter Garrett, DJ Trixie Mattell, Alex Lahey lead Melbourne’s 10-day free SoundBox pop-up

Words by Staff Writer

SOUNDBOX is the fully functioning pop-up audio studio will take you behind the scenes of the music industry for 10 huge days.

ALWAYS LIVE, Victoria’s much-anticipated 17-day celebration of live music, is set to ignite the music scene with a jaw-dropping array of new acts and events, enhancing its already colossal 2023 program. Supported by the Victorian Government through Visit Victoria, this year’s festival, running from November 24 to December 10, boasts a staggering lineup of over 350 performers from across the globe, spread across 65 distinct events throughout the state.

At the heart of this sonic spectacle, SOUNDBOX, ALWAYS LIVE’s free pop-up live music studio, will once again grace the Arts Centre Melbourne forecourt for an exhilarating ten-day run. This vibrant hub will be bursting with live performances, broadcasts, artist interviews, showcases, songwriting sessions, and more.

Keep up with the latest music news, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

Offering audiences a unique opportunity to witness the inner workings of the live music scene up close, with up to and over five different performances each day, the eclectic SOUNDBOX lineup features an impressive roster of special guests and performers from both the ALWAYS LIVE program and beyond.


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Among the highlights are Yorta Yorta, Kalkadoon, and Yirendali R&B sensation Miss Kaninna; the soul-stirring 12-piece ensemble Sunshine and Disco Faith Choir; the powerful quartet Teen Jesus & The Jean Teasers; US pop sensation Chappell Roan; rapper and producer Illy; multi-ARIA-nominated triple j favorites Holy Holy; rising songwriting star Ruby Fields; alt-rock singer and multi-instrumentalist Alex Lahey; UK DJ, rapper, and reggae legend General Levy; triple j Unearthed Feature Artists The Belair Lip Bombs; viral internet sensation-turned-pop icon Rebecca Black; singer-songwriter Mo’Ju; Australian rock legend Peter Garrett; US TV drag superstar and performer DJ Trixie Mattel; songwriter and producer Jerome Farah; beloved Melbourne pop-punk heroes Slowly Slowly; hot up-and-comers Gut Health, and many more.

For those unable to attend in person, SOUNDBOX will host free onsite live broadcasts featuring ALWAYS LIVE artists through partnerships with CADA, 3KND, THE FOX, PBS, JOY, and ABC Melbourne.

Kicking off SOUNDBOX in style is “Blak Out Day” on Friday, November 24, featuring a full day of First Nations artist interviews and performances broadcast live on 3KND. The lineup includes musicians, dancers, and storytellers such as Airileke x Yidaki, Bandok Tati, Brother Nelson, Brothers in Arms, Caution, Izy, Jahmal Yami, Tamala Shelton, and Waari.

Some standout highlights of the SOUNDBOX lineup include KIRA-Oke, a karaoke extravaganza presented by Kira Piru; a special live artist-on-artist discussion between Victorian punk icons Amyl and the Sniffers and Cosmic Psychos; live performances celebrating Mushroom 50; Taylor Made Karaoke, where everyone can belt out their favorite Taylor Swift hits, presented by Clementine Ford; a special performance by Beijing-born Melbourne-based DJ Moopie, in partnership with Music Victoria; and UK disco sensation Jessie Ware, who will also grace SOUNDBOX in addition to her headlining performance at Summer Camp and an exclusive ALWAYS LIVE intimate show at Victoria by Farmers Daughters.

SOUNDBOX’s grand finale will feature an extra special performance in partnership with Summer Camp Festival by the chart-topping US singer, DJ, and producer Ultra Naté, known for hits like ‘Free’ and ‘If You Could Read My Mind.’

For further information and tickets head here