Features November 23, 2018

VIDEO PREMIERE: Victoria’s The Push celebrates 30 years of engaging youth through music

VIDEO PREMIERE: Victoria’s The Push celebrates 30 years of engaging youth through music

Victoria’s leading youth music organisation celebrates its 30th anniversary by bringing back the state’s longest running all-ages event ‘Push Over’.

The free event is held tomorrow (Saturday, November 24) at Federation Square in Melbourne from 5 pm.

“We are super hyped to bring back Push Over for this one-off special event,” says The Push CEO Kate Duncan.

”Across Victoria, we are seeing more young people attending all-ages events than ever before and The Push is ready to foster and support our next generation of live music audiences.”

Staged as part of Melbourne Music Week, its strong bill includes Allday, Ali Barter, Ruby Fields and Kian plus guest performances from Push Over alumni Jebediah, Spiderbait, The Living End and Something for Kate.

Over three decades, The Push delivered a wide range of programs to 700,000 young people and helped create the next generation of the state’s music leaders and arts workers.

Push Over staged at Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Luna Park and Abbotsford Convent, helping to develop an all-ages audience and helping to kick-start the careers of Silverchair, The Avalanches, The Amity Affliction, British India, Something for Kate, The Living End, Spiderbait, Killing Heidi and Jebediah.

As singer-songwriter Alice Ivy points out, “It’s extremely important to play underage shows and bring bands to underage audiences, because that’s the future of the music industry.”

Linda Carroll, a founder of The Push, recalls the association’s start: “Unemployment was high, there wasn’t a lot of training going on in those days.

“It was actually the then Labor government, (minister) Steve Crabb, who had this idea that he wanted to start a club…

“Originally the way he described it sounded a little bit like the Scouts and I was like ‘…I don’t that will work!’

“But to their credit, they really wanted to connect with young people, and the best way we could do it was obviously throug’h something that was attractive, which was rock n roll.“

Carroll’s approach right from the start was it had to be pro-active.

“It wasn’t just, well okay, we’ll put a band on and everybody comes.

“We want you to get involved in that process.

“Every aspect that goes into producing a gig, we were working on with those kids.

“So from day one we knew it was going to be a hands on job.”

There was an underlying motive in the idea:

Says Carroll, “Really, what we wanted to do was break the bands – give them the opportunity that a new manager or a new booking agency could see them, that the media could see them and write about them.

“That started to work. To the point where sometimes we couldn’t book them anymore [laughs]”

The Push has its share of young admirers in the industry.

“If you don’t value the person you’re booking it for, it’s not going to be a successful event.

“That’s what differentiates The Push from everyone else, because it’s for the youth and it’s run by the youth” – Sara Glaidous, writer services representative, APRA AMCOS.

“It’s really important to The Push I think, that gigs are really safe spaces for people, especially considering that for a lot of young people, The Push might be the first live music experience that they have.” – Shaad D’Souza, editor of Noisey

“There’s a stigma around putting on those [all ages] shows and getting to them and accessing that sort of stuff…

“So I think what The Push does is great, you know. It enables venues and it enables artists and promoters to be able to do more stuff and get involved.” – Nathan Gunn, participant of the New Slang program.

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