Powderfinger Bassist Slams QLD Government Over New Venue Restrictions

Powderfinger bassist John Collins has taken aim at the QLD government over their new restrictions for events venues, announced in the wake of several new cases of COVID-19 in the state.

Collins – who also co-owns Brisbane venues The Triffid and Fortitude Music Hall – has pointed to this weekend’s NRL grand-final – which will take place at a 75% capacity Suncorp Stadium- as a clear case of double standards shown by the government.

“It’s difficult to convey how angry I am after listening to Premier (Annastacia) Palaszcuk deliver the new restrictions at the press conference this morning,” Collins wrote in a post on his personal Facebook page earlier today.

“I love the NRL as much as anyone but I’m struggling to understand the science that supports 40,000 people at Suncorp Stadium while the venues that I co-own and manage have again been reduced to 50% capacity.

“In reality, these restrictions are the same as lockdown for the music industry but without the financial support offered during a lockdown.”

The post was shared by the Fortitude Valley Music Hall page with the hashtag #playfair.

Under new restrictions, hospitality venues must return to a one-person per four square meter rule indoors, and one person per two square meters outdoors.

In addition, patrons must be seated in venues when eating and drinking, and dancing is not permitted, majorly handicapping already struggling venues wanting to host events over the grand final weekend.

Collin’s comments come just days after Tina Arena hit out at the lack of support for the Australian arts in a fiery interview on Channel 10. 

“I hate the differentiation between sport and arts in Australia,” said the ‘Chains’ singer.

“It’s now at a point where, for me, somebody needs to draw the line.

“As the artistic community, we will draw the line in the sand now and we’ll say, ‘No more of your double standards now.’”

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