Government announces $2m in First Nations music program funding
The program is aimed at increasing development opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians, $500,000 to be provided each year.
The grants will allow the Australia Council to provide $150,000 for an Indigenous contemporary music projects competitive grant program and another $100,000 to run a matched funding initiative to support the development of the Indigenous music sector.
Meanwhile the APRA AMCOS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Music Office receives $100,000 for emergency grants to deliver to Indigenous musicians and bands affected by COVID-19, and MusicNT receives $50,000 to hold the 2020 National Indigenous Music Awards ceremony online.
$100,000 has been provided to ARIA to assist five Indigenous artists or Indigenous led recording projects to produce a musical recording and undertake marketing and promotion.
ARIA, in partnership with PPCA and the Australia Council will provide $18,500 to each artist, with a program that accommodates access to industry professionals who will advise and help the grantees to develop effective marketing, promotion and audience growth for their recording project.
“ARIA is proud to announce this grant, designed to help amplify First Nations voices in our industry,” said ARIA CEO Dan Rosen.
“I look forward to hearing the music that will be created as the result of these grants, and also to work towards a more diverse and inclusive Australian music industry.”
Australia Council Executive Director Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts, Lydia Miller, added; “We are delighted to extend our partnership with ARIA and PPCA and to deliver these grants to First Nations contemporary musicians. We can’t wait to hear the exciting new releases that will be made possible through these new grants”
The five grants will be awarded later in 2020.
In a joint statement with the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM MP highlighted the power of Indigenous music to strengthen culture, language and history for all Australians.
“The music of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is grounded in traditions and practices that are tens of thousands of years old which our young musicians are now evolving to create incredible contemporary sounds,” said Wyatt.
“These terrific initiatives will support a wide range of individuals and bands across the country, from our cities to regional and remote communities, providing crisis support as well as creating opportunities for the development, promotion, celebration and recognition of the enormous talent within Australia’s Indigenous music sector,” said MP Fletcher, Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts.