Australia: Melbourne Gets Drive-In Venue; Executive Changes
Untitled Group Sets Up Drive-In Venue in Melbourne
Festival promoter Untitled Group set up Melbourne’s first pop-up drive-in venue, with plans for up to a dozen socially-distanced shows a month “until restrictions ease to the point we’re running music festivals again,” said co-director Filippo Palermo. Each show, with one headliner and two supports, runs four hours and employs 200.
Untitled Group created festivals as Beyond the Valley, Pitch Music & Arts, Grapevine Gathering, Wildlands and Ability Fest, the massive Footscray Wool Store warehouse parties and, recently, free live-streamed day parties from locations including a train carriage and a factory.
Located at Flemington Racecourse, The Drive-In holds 500 cars, with a 15 x 12-meter stage, three huge screens, contactless ticketing, temperature checks, separate bathrooms for each row, and pre-ordered food and drinks for delivery to cars.
Ten shows are set to begin July 10, with Ball Park Music and Lime Cordiale sold-out, and others by Client Liaison, Alex Lahey, Baker Boy and Northeast Party House running at 60%. Following months will feature films and comedy.
Elsewhere, Drive-in Entertainment Australia held the first drive-in concert in Sydney May 21 to 300 cars with eight more shows to follow. The team behind Buskers By The Lake holds the Sunshine Coast’s Airwaves – The Drive-in Music Festival is held July 10 to 12 at Nambour Showgrounds with The Dreggs, Chats and Pierce Brothers and an outer space theme.
Executive Changes At Live Nation Australia, Music SA & More
Marcus Seal, one-time head of commercial marketing at Live Nation Australia, is now general manager at 34-year old outdoor agency Rock Posters.
He was previously director of international marketing at Sony Music, CEO of Shock Entertainment Group, head of marketing at music and lifestyle The M Agency, and headed communications at City of Melbourne.
Company founder and CEO John D’Aquino said Seal’s background in music, marketing and government “made him a natural fit for us.”
In other news Brandon Le Gallez, tour marketing & communications specialist at Live Nation Australia for the past three years, has joined under-age concert network The Push as communications & community engagement manager. He continues to manage electronic producer LUBOKU.
Cabaret artist, actor, writer and social activist Alan Cumming is now artistic director for Adelaide Cabaret Festival 2021 for its 21st year. Born in Scotland, Cumming is based in New York City where he owns cabaret bar Club Cumming.
South Australia’s peak music association Music SA has named Kim Roberts its new GM. Performing in two bands in Adelaide, broadcasting on college radio, she has for the past two years worked as head of training at Music SA.
We Will Rock You Star Dies At 47
Musical theatre star and tenor Michael Falzon, handpicked by Queen and scriptwriter Ben Elton for the original Australian production of We Will Rock You, died from a rare and aggressive form of germ cell cancer. He was 48, and featured in productions of War of the Worlds, Jesus Christ Superstar and Rock of Ages.
“He loved the arts and he loved what we do,” tweeted singer David Campbell. “He had a smile that could light up a stage and the first ten rows.” Falzon is survived by his wife, violinist Jane Cho.
NSW Merges SCG Trust, Venues NSW
The New South Wales (NSW) government merged the Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust (SCGT) and Venues NSW to create a single organization for the state’s sporting and entertainment venues.
The SCG Trust manages the 48,601 Sydney Cricket Ground and the new $829 million ($569 million) 45,500 seat Allianz Stadium) and Venues NSW the ANZ Stadium (83,500) and Bankwest Stadium (21,000) in Sydney McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle (33,000) and Wollongong’s WIN Stadium (23,000).
Acting minister for sport Geoff Lee explained that after the government’s investment in the venues, “this merger is about placing NSW in the best possible position to attract the most exciting and sought after events so the entire state can benefit from the economic stimulation.”