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Australia facing live music shortage over summer

Concerts and festivals not expected to return "in a major way" until well into next year, says Live Performance Australia CEO

By James Hanley on 26 Nov 2021

Splendour in the Grass 2019

Splendour in the Grass

Trade body Live Performance Australia says the country’s cautious reopening has left it facing a shortage of touring artists over the summer months.

The organisation’s CEO Evelyn Richardson says the December to February summer period is shaping up to be a quiet one, with music events not expected to return “in a major way” until well into next year.

“We’ve missed the opportunity to bring in a lot of our international touring acts for this summer, and with our domestic artists, many of those are touring internationally so we haven’t got those people touring either,” Richardson told ABC. “We probably won’t see live music come back in a major way until later 2022.”

Major international artists including Kings of Leon, Rod Stewart and Kiss are due to tour the region from March next year, while acts such as Billie Eilish, Tame Impala and Dua Lipa are expected in the second half of 2022.

A recent report revealed that Covid-19 stripped Australia’s live entertainment industry of AUS $1.4 billion in revenue during 2020

New South Wales festival staple Splendour in the Grass is set for North Byron Parklands from 22-24 July, headlined by Gorillaz, The Strokes and Tyler, the Creator.

A recent report revealed that Covid-19 stripped Australia’s live entertainment industry of AUS$1.4 billion in revenue during 2020.

Following record years in 2018 and 2019, the pandemic had a “devastating impact” on the live sector, according to Live Performance Australia’s Ticket Attendance and Revenue Report. Ticketing data showed close to 70% of revenue and attendance was obliterated after the industry was shut down in March last year.

In 2020, the number of tickets issued to live performance events fell by 68% to under eight million, ticket sales revenue fell by 69% to $600m, and the average ticket price fell from $92.89 to $87.14.


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