The Morrison Government today announced the first funding recipients under the $2 million Indigenous Contemporary Music Program, aimed at increasing development opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians and bands.
Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the program is providing $500,000 annually over four years, as part of the Government’s Australian Music Industry Package.
“We are investing in the Indigenous contemporary music sector to increase opportunities for our performers and to support the ongoing development of professional and ethical networks for Indigenous musicians and professionals,” said Minister Fletcher.
The program will support a range of opportunities and activities in the first year, including:
- $250,000 to the Australia Council to deliver Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander music grants, including:
- $150,000 for an Indigenous contemporary music projects competitive grant program.
- $100,000 to run a matched funding initiative to support the development of the Indigenous music sector.
- $100,000 to the APRA AMCOS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Music Office to provide emergency grants for Indigenous musicians and bands affected by COVID-19.
- $100,000 to the Australian Recording Industry Association to assist five Indigenous artists or Indigenous led recording projects to produce a musical recording and undertake marketing and promotion.
- $50,000 to MusicNT to hold the 2020 National Indigenous Music Awards ceremony online, in response to COVID-19.
“These terrific initiatives will support a wide range of individuals and bands across the country, from our cities to regional and remote communities, providing crisis support as well as creating opportunities for the development, promotion, celebration and recognition of the enormous talent within Australia’s Indigenous music sector,” Minister Fletcher said.
Minister for Indigenous Australians, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM MP, said Indigenous music has the power to strengthen culture, language and history for all Australians, while also enhancing Australia’s diverse music industry.
“The music of Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is grounded in traditions and practices that are tens of thousands of years old which our young musicians are now evolving to create incredible contemporary sounds,” Minister Wyatt said.
“For Indigenous cultures, music and song are central to identity, place and belonging. Writing and performing music are also important expressions of resilience and survival.”
The Indigenous Contemporary Music Program is one of five programs under the $30.9 million Australian Music Industry Package announced in the 2019-20 Budget.
The Government invests around $750 million in the arts and cultural sector through its regular funding programs each year.