Victorian government announces interruption insurance scheme for music festivals

A $20million Live Music Restart funding package was also announced to "support Victoria's live music scene"

The Victorian Government has announced that it is set to launch an “Australian first” interruption insurance scheme for music festivals.

Sharing the news today (November 14), premier Daniel Andrews said the scheme will start as a 12-month pilot program, insuring up to $230million for “events cancelled because of public health measures, or because of reduced capacity due to restrictions”.

“For music lovers it means your favourite festivals will be up and running again, and you’ll be able to book your tickets with confidence,” he wrote, “and for industry, you’ll be protected whether your shows goes ahead or not”.

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The scheme will be subsidised by the Victorian Government and delivered by the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority (VMIA), covering festivals, sporting events and conferences.

It comes months after a host of Australian live music industry bodies called on the Federal Government for a government-backed insurance scheme, to cover events cancelled due to COVID-19.

Additionally, a $20million Live Music Restart package was also announced, which includes $8million for music venues to recruit new staff and invest in COVIDSafe infrastructure, $8million for music festival organisers and $4million for bringing music events back to the inner-city. A similar $5million package for regional areas was previously announced.

“Victoria is Australia’s music heartland and we’re making sure the industry can return stronger than ever and people can enjoy a summer of gigs and festivals,” Danny Pearson, Victorian Minister for Creative Industries, said in a press statement.

“This package will help our music industry get up and running quickly, giving venues the confidence to throw open their doors and get people back to work on stage and behind the scenes.”

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Application details for the funding are yet to be announced, but will be made available through Creative Victoria.

Victoria’s sixth lockdown ended last month, with further restrictions on venue and festival capacity limits set to be scrapped in late November once the state has reached its 90 per cent fully vaccinated target.

On October 30, the state hosted Play On Victoria as its first “COVIDSafe Test Event”, welcoming 4,000 people back to the Sidney Myer Music Bowl to watch Amyl and the Sniffers, Vika and Linda, Baker Boy, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard and Grace Cummings.

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