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News March 9, 2022

UNIFIED, Live Nation, QMusic successful in final RISE round

Senior Journalist, B2B
UNIFIED, Live Nation, QMusic successful in final RISE round

The final round of RISE funds has been allocated, with millions funneled into scores of live projects, including several decisions that will surely raise eyebrows.

Canberra’s $200 million budget for its Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand fund (RISE) breaks off the remaining $20 million for the arts, the bulk of which is injected into the struggling concerts space and the performing arts, including theatre and dance. 

Music festivals, crippled by the the trifecta of bushfires, floods and the pandemic, are among the big winners.

Jaddan Comerford’s UNIFIED Music Group is successful with its application for a regional showcase and merchandise pop-up store project featuring performances and goods designed by artists on its roster. The Melbourne-based group receives $480,000.

Also, $600,000 is earmarked for Empire Touring on a national tour of Australian performers visiting 23 locations to “pay tribute to the world’s best,” including The Rolling Stones, Nirvana, John Lennon and David Bowie.

British India land $140,000 to support the indie rockers on a national tour “with a focus on regional towns.”

Jaddan Comerford

Also getting a win is Queensland’s Yeehaa Events, which receives $577,500 to present NQ’s Rock’n Country, featuring more than 40 homegrown acts which the organisation is confident will “reboot the industry and the careers of emerging artists.”

Concerts giant Live Nation receives $97,500 to produce the “On Stage” series at the Palais Theatre in Melbourne, part of the group’s vast live entertainment empire.

Also, Deni Ute Muster ($400,000) and Darwin Festival ($482,400), QMusic’s FiestaNQ ($344,900) and Wildlands Music Festival ($277,410) get the go-ahead.

The single largest grant in “batch seven” is a sum of $713,950 awarded to musical theatre production company LPD Productions, to support its 18-week national tour of RENT across regional and metropolitan Australia in 2023.

Also noteworthy is the $700,000 allocated to Black Swan State Theatre Company, which is successful in its application to mount a national tour.

And the Trustee for Newpub Family Holdings Trust gets the green light for a major new Australian music series north of Brisbane, dubbed “Moreton Bay Live,” with a grant to the tune of $697,500.

Paul Fletcher, Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, announced the latest round, and posed for a snap with the Australian Dance Theatre, which was successful with its own application for a $223,000 grant.

The RISE fund was first announced in June 2020 with $75 million set aside.

With this last round, RISE has plugged $200 million into 541 projects, supporting 213,000 jobs, says Fletcher, money that’s intended to keep the creative communities afloat during these bleak times.

Read the RISE “batch seven” summary here.

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.


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