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The government-backed concert series brought more than 1,000 Covid-safe gigs to venues across New South Wales during November
By IQ on 14 Dec 2020
More than 75,000 tickets were sold for Great Southern Nights, a government-backed concert series which brought more than 1,000 Covid-safe gigs to venues across New South Wales (NSW) during November.
The series, presented along with the Australian recording industry association (Aria), was organised with the aim to reinvigorate NSW’s live music scene.
Artists including Tones and I, the Presets, Thelma Plum, Jimmy Barnes, the Veronicas and Tash Sultana performed throughout the month.
The shows are supported by NSW’s tourism agency, Destination NSW. The state’s minister for jobs, investment, tourism and Western Sydney, Stuart Ayres, says: “NSW has led Australia, and even the world, in getting live entertainment back on stages, from Great Southern Nights’ 1,100 gigs across NSW to musical theatre reopening in Sydney.
“We have demonstrated that live music is crucial to NSW’s social, cultural and economic well-being and can be enjoyed while following the health advice, which supports NSW’s approach to further easing restrictions in recent weeks.”
“We have demonstrated that live music is crucial to NSW’s social, cultural and economic well-being”
ARIA CEO Dan Rosen added, “It is extremely heartening to see the impact that the Great Southern Nights initiative had on all areas of the live music industry in NSW – from artists and venues to sound and lighting crew.
“This program helped kick-start the live music industry, by getting thousands of artists and music industry professionals back to work and ensuring music fans could experience our great Australian artists in a live environment once again.”
The concert series concluded with two shows at Qudos Bank Arena (cap. 21,000), organised by TEG, Live Nation and the NSW government.
The shows, dubbed Greatest Southern Nights, invited more than 12,000 fans over two nights in a seated, ‘Covid-safe’ setting.
Ocean Alley headlined the first gig, on 28 November, joined by Jack River, Ruby Fields and Jack Botts, with Bernard Fanning and Matt Corby, supported by Merci, Mercy, played the second on 5 December.
TEG CEO Geoff Jones recently spoke to IQ about what it was like organising the first indoor arena shows in Australia since the coronavirus pandemic hit in March.
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