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News November 8, 2022

Music Festivals Continue To Be Economic and Tourism Drivers

Music Festivals Continue To Be Economic and Tourism Drivers

A study on events in the Northern Territory, and numerous entries in the South Australia tourism awards, have shown that music festivals continue to be economic and tourism drivers.

Figures from the NT Government showed that six events by the Northern Territory Major Events Company (NTMEC) collectively drew 135,441 patrons, with 55,530 confirming they travelled to the region specifically for the event.

The six events generated 276,239 visitor nights, delivered a gross expenditure stimulus of $117.7 million across the Territory, and sustained the equivalent of 614 full-time jobs.

Patron satisfaction for them was a high 8.4 out of 10 on average, 66.6% would recommend them to friends, 95.2% encouraged the NT Government to support more events via the NTMEC, and 94% agreed the event they went to had a
positive impact on the local community.

Two of the six were festivals were both underwritten by the Territory government.

BASSINTHEGRASS was held on May 21 at Mindil Beach in Darwin with acts including Hilltop Hoods, Jessica Mauboy, Teskey Bros, Peking Duk, Xavier Rudd, Dune Rats, G Flip, Boy and Bear, Montaigne and Dope Lemon.

It drew a record 16,000, half from outside the Territory. Last year it generated $14.5 million for the NT economy, $12 million of it new money.

The First Nations Parrtjima – A Festival in Light in Alice Springs (April 8 to 17) reached a new attendance milestone of 23,445, of which 6,947 were from interstate.

According to the NTMEC, around 70% of interstate visitors travelled to Alice Springs just for Parrtjima.

The festival generated a total expenditure stimulus of $14.7 million (up from $11.6 million in 2021), of which 81% ($11.9 million) was new money to the Territory.

Parrtjima visitors clocked up a total of 34,627 visitor nights in the Territory, including 26,683 in Alice Springs and 7,944 elsewhere in the NT.

The other NTMEC mega-events were Red Centre NATS 2021, Million Dollar Fish Season 7, NRL 2022, and the 2022 Darwin Triple Crown Supercars Indigenous Round.

Paul Kirby, the minister for major events, said: “Staging events from the Top End right down to the Red Centre gives plenty of reasons for interstate visitors to add the Northern Territory to their travel itinerary, and we are thrilled with the results from major events held from 2021-2022.”

A little further south, five music-associated events were name-checked among winners at the South Australian Tourism Awards, held are the Adelaide Convention Centre on Nov. 3.

Adelaide Fringe won the Major Festivals and Events category after generating over $74.9 million this year and bringing $50.1 million of fresh funds into the state.

It sold a dazzling 727,567 tickets, an increase of 15% on last year.

Among them were 32,000 tourists, the spend per tourist almost quadrupling in the past five years from $607 per person in 2017 to $2,258 per person in 2022.

Taking silver in the category was the technology light and music event Illuminate Adelaide 2021.

It passed 1.2 million in its second year with an economic impact of $10 million.

In the Festivals and Events section, frontrunner was Sky Song, the signature event of the Fringe.

The world’s first feature-length drone art event, it combined 350 drones and First Nations artwork, with 72 metre wide outdoor holographic screen at a McLaren Vale winery.

Light Creatures, spotlighting animals at Adelaide Zoo, took silver.

Wearing bronze was the Adelaide Guitar Festival, with 180 musicians putting in 322 shows across SA, including at schools, health care services, seven metro venues and 35 regional venues.

Total festival attendances was over 16,000.

Slava Grigoryan, the artistic director, said the economic benefit of the regional shows in 2021 exceeded $1.8 million, and on average, 24% of audiences were visitors to the regions.

“That shows us how strongly the program was valued everywhere by both locals and tourists.”

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