courtesy CrewCare – A road crew at work
Two-Thirds Of Live Entertainment Jobs Could Go By Christmas, Warns EY Report
Two thirds of live entertainment jobs in music, arts and sports could vanish by Christmas from 122,000 to just 43,000 at the current level of government recovery support said a new report by finance company EY, published Oct. 13.
Aside from this loss of 79,000 full time positions, A$23.6 billion ($16.7 billion) of economic output would be lost in the same period from A$36.4 billion ($25.8 billion) to A$12.8 billion ($9 billion), and a further loss of A$10.7 billion ($7.5 billion) of added value.
A preliminary version of “The Economic Cost of COVID-19 On Australia’s Live Entertainment Industry” report was released through the Live Entertainment Industry Forum (LEIF) a day before Event Summit 2020 at Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney.
LEIF chairman James Sutherland and Live Nation Asia-Pacific president Roger Field and TEG chief executive Geoff Jones used the summit to call for more government intervention in its path to recovery.
– Live Nation’s Roger Field
These included a moratorium until next July on GST on live event tickets to offset costs of COVID-safe initiatives, continuing employees-support scheme JobKeeper due to end March, and a Live Entertainment Business Interruption Fund underwritten by government “to overcome the fact we cannot get insurance to cover us for shows being stalled due to COVID,” Field said.
Jones added the fact “more than 80% of people have held onto tickets for postponed shows during COVID” indicated the public expected to have the sector waiting at the end of restrictions.
Promoters Looking At Travel Bubble
With acts from the U.S., UK and Europe not expected until 2022 as the pandemic worsens in their countries, promoters in Australia and New Zealand are eying the travel bubble set up by their governments after closing borders in March.
NZ tourists are allowed into New South Wales (NSW) and the Northern Territory without quarantining from Oct. 16. Australians are expected to be able to head to NZ early 2021.
– Greenstone’s Summer Concert Tour
But NZ has already begun border exemptions for random sports teams and music acts. Live Nation has had exceptions, according to the ministry of business, innovation and employment, without specifying which acts these were.
Greenstone Entertainment was granted 29 exceptions for concerts during the summer. The first was for the three-winery Summer Concert Tour Jan. 23-30 for the eleventh year to a total audience of 50,000 with Australia’s The Angels and Pseudo Echo, and Sydney-based NZ bands, Dragon and Mi-Sex. Headliner Gin Wigmore is a New Zealander who now lives in the US.
New Zealand Promoters’ Association president Brent Eccles called for rules to be consistently applied. “In promoters’ minds, [COVID cases] have settled down, but so far as being able to get artists into the country, it’s still extremely difficult, and most of the applications have been denied.”
TEG Strikes Alliance With Empire Touring
– TEG Geoff Jones
TEG struck a multi-year strategic alliance with Empire Touring to co-promote tours and events featuring 80s and ‘90s acts. Empire, founded by Marc Christowski and GM Isobel Lanesman, also created festival brands Pure Gold Live, Spring Loaded and Rock at the Races.
TEG will lend its financial support, marketing clout, promotion and analytics, with CEO Geoff Jones saying “Marc and Isobel have built a business with a storied history and a great future, particularly given their clever pivot to focus on Australia’s wealth of homegrown talent.”
The first result of the partnership is Pure Gold Live at Sydney Coliseum Dec. 4 and 5 including Steve Kilbey of The Church, Richard Clapton, Dragon, Wendy Matthews and Mi-Sex.
Australia’s Festival Season Heats Up
Australia’s warm weather is bringing back established festivals in a scaled-down form, while others are introduced or expanded.
Sydney light, sound and ideas festival Vivid returns Aug. 6 to 28, 2021. It usually stages in May but time was needed to solve social-distancing issues as the event draws 2 million annually and injects $41 million into the NSW economy.
Central Queensland country music Way Out West is back April 5—11 2021 with 100 Australian acts over seven venues to a crowd of 30,000 per day. Organizers market the beauty of the outback as a backdrop.
Blues At Bridgetown was this year renamed COVID Blues, downscaled to three days in November and restricted to two venues.
The Gold Coast holds the inaugural Feedback Festival (Dec. 3-13) with 50 acts playing over ten music venues and secret pop-up sessions, and serving as a tourism boost.
Zaccaria Concerts & Touring expands its outdoor concert series SummerSalt to new locations this summer, including Hobart at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens.
To provide more revenue for musicians, venues and businesses the City of Melbourne extended Melbourne Music Week from five days in November to a three-month run Dec. 9 to February 28 with free and ticketed shows.
Similarly, the NSW government’s scheme to kickstart live music with Great Southern Nights is a success. Through November, 2,500 artists (including major names as Jimmy Barnes, Tones & I, Kasey Chambers and Hoodoo Gurus) will play 900 shows in 300 clubs, theatres, wineries, restaurants, bars and bowling clubs.
INXS Musical Eying Broadway, West End
– INXS manager Chris Murphy
Petrol Live, theatrical arm of INXS’s manager-turned-creative strategist Christopher M. Murphy’s Petrol Group, signed with Australian-based global theatrical producer Michael Cassel to develop a musical around the music of the band whose record sales exceeded 70,000.
An international writer with a track record of hit productions is devising a storyline from the band’s 200-strong repertoire, which includes hits as ‘Need You Tonight’, ‘Suicide Blonde’, ‘What You Need’ and ‘Never Tear Us Apart’. The plan is to stage on Broadway and the West End.
Murphy told Pollstar, ”Now is the time for a musical. Last month (September), INXS’s The Very Best Of album hit 500,000 in Australia, certifying it diamond status, and making them the biggest selling Australian act this decade. Streaming brought them to a new young audience, and this year England overtook Australia as their biggest market.”
Live Nation Expands Ones To Watch To NZ
Three years after Live Nation set up its music discovery platform Ones To Watch in the U.S., it has been launched in New Zealand. LN will conduct the scheme with local strategic partner Vodafone, which has 3 million NZ customers
Over a year, 12 local emerging acts will be profiled with editorials, videos and playlists, curated by the NZ team under managing director Mark Kneebone. There’ll also be quarterly showcase events, the first on Oct. 21.