With many live music events, concerts, and tours still effectively shut down in Australia due to border closures and economic uncertainty, the workers who depend on live music events for their livelihoods are doing it tough.
In response, some of the key South-East QLD sound, lighting, and vision production businesses have come together for a charity golf day on June 16 in Brisbane to raise money for those hardest hit via the charity for live music workers, CrewCare. Audio and lighting equipment distributor Jands have stepped up to the tee and promised an astonishing $1 million prize payable to CrewCare should any golfer manage to get a hole-in-one on the day.
“From one very simple phone call, the level of support offered by Jands has been simply amazing. It is testament to their outstanding reputation in the Australian music and live production industry,” says event organiser Ray Moss, General Manager of Norwest Productions, a leading company whose staff are currently in Tokyo to provide audio and communications support to the Olympics, a role they have played at every Olympics since Sydney 2000.
The event will run on 16 June 2021 at Brisbane’s St Lucia Golf Links – registrations are fully booked with 28 teams made up of players from across the live music events supply and service industry, demonstrating the widespread concern the industry has for their workers.
“COVID-19 has been devastating to the businesses and individuals of our industry,” continues Ray. “I personally consider myself lucky because I have full time employment and am fortunate to be part of a great business that has navigated the down-turn extremely well. On the other hand, I have countless friends and colleagues that are struggling both financially and emotionally, and know that dozens of them have been given a lifeline through the generous support of CrewCare.”
Established in 2019, CrewCare directs their fundraising efforts to the SupportAct Crew Fund, ensuring all funds raised go directly to events workers that urgently need financial assistance. Their annual Roady4Roadies campaign has raised more than $100,000, and their Mental Health First Aid courses have trained over 300 events crew to identify mental health issues in colleagues and direct them to treatment.
“What most people don’t realise when they’re watching a concert or live event is the disproportionally high level of health and wellbeing issues the live production industry is riddled with,” shares Ray. “Unfortunately, attending memorial services is an all-too-regular occurrence in our world. The crews that all of our businesses rely on have been doing it tough not only through COVID, but also through the depression, addiction, relationship issues, and poor lifestyle choices that plague our industry.”
Targeted government support for the industry that has arguably been the worst affected by COVID restrictions has been inconsistent, at best. The live music events industry is always the first to donate time, labour, and equipment in the aftermath of national disaster, as they did for the Fire Fight charity concert in February 2020, with the lack of support in kind noted with irony by the industry as a whole.
“Our industry needs support at a government level to rebuild from being globally annihilated due to COVID restrictions,” argues Ray. “We also deserve and need the same privileges that sporting events are currently enjoying across Australia.”
If you wish to support CrewCare and the many Australian Road Crew going through tough times, please donate via the following link:
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