Sydney Live Music Taskforce Unveil Comprehensive Action Plan

A comprehensive action plan centred on improving Sydney’s live music environment has been published. Assembled by the City of Sydney Live Music and Live Performance Taskforce, the report contains 57 recommendations for policy-based action.

The plan is the result of a year of research and consultation undertaken by the taskforce with a view to addressing the persisting concerns of the live music economy such as liquor licensing, noise limits, and building codes.

The action plan focuses on ameliorating ailing small-to-mid size venues like FBi Social and Brighton Up Bar. These sites, the report asserts, are essential to the well-being of the larger venues such as the State Theatre, and to the health of Sydney’s live music ecology overall.

“This report investigates the biggest challenges that the small to medium performing arts sector has faced in a generation, [and] faces them head on by describing the issues clearly and makes detailed policy recommendations,” said Wardle this afternoon, as reported by

Wardle indicated that the report was a major step in opening the lines of communication between the arts sector and government, and a significant move towards a mutually beneficial interdependency between the two. Said Wardle:

“You’ve got to participate, if you don’t participate we get rubbed out. I really hope we’ve learnt our lesson that the sector has not engaged with policy development. This [report] is 20 years – or longer – of catch-up work. This is a lot of work that we’re doing here.”

Some of the report’s key recommendations include the appointment of a City Of Sydney live music and performance liaison officer to expedite venue operations and a review of the Sydney Development Control Plan to protect areas with a history of live music.

The report also recommended a pre-emptive attitude towards noise issues, instead of reactionary punishments, the establishment of a new major outdoor event space in Sydney, and advocating for musicians and performers to be included in affordable housing schemes.

Leichhardt Mayor Darcy Byrne, nicknamed ‘The Annandale Mayor’ for his outspoken attitude during the sale of Sydney’s beloved Annandale Hotel, has praised the taskforce’s action plan, reports

“I congratulate the City and the Taskforce members for producing such a ground-breaking report on how to revitalise the live music industry,” said Mayor Byrne. “It’s gratifying to see that the taskforce and Leichhardt Council are thinking along the same lines.”

With the sheer amount of recommendations included in the report, pundits are confident a number of them will pass council muster. Music Feeds readers can download the full report here.


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