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Play Local - funding outcomes

Play Local is supporting Queensland’s live music and performing performance venues to program Queensland artists and arts organisations while social distancing restrictions are in place and during the subsequent recovery phase.

Objectives of the fund included:

  • Support Queensland-based live performance venues to program more Queensland artists in 2020. With funding supporting shows over a number of weeks or months between 15 August and 31 December 2020, or to support a single performance, up to the maximum $20,000.
  • Increase paid performance opportunities for our artists and artsworkers in 2020
  • Facilitate audience access to live music and performing arts events and to build community confidence towards recovery.

Play Local is part of the Queensland Government's Arts and Cultural Recovery Package of $22.5 million over two years to stabilise Queensland’s arts companies, secure employment for artists and arts workers and deliver COVID-safe cultural experiences for Queensland audiences



Outcomes for Play Local were announced on the 20 August 2020. Play Local funding of $864,385 will fund 55 live music and performing arts venues throughout the state to host performances by Queensland acts and artists. These include:

  • Artemus Events $19,930 – ARTEMUS and Dust Temple will resume with the concert program, plus the Saturday Morning Sounds Singer-songwriter sessions.
  • Barcaldine Regional Council $5,299 – programming for Funny Mummies a stand-up comedy showcase.
  • Barcoo Shire Council $14,948 - Flipside Circus will tour with three Queensland artists - two senior trainers and one junior trainer.
  • Blackall-Tambo Regional Council $20,000 – Funny Mummies and Flipside Circus
  • Boulia Shire Council $5,649 - Flipside Circus will tours with three Queensland artists, two senior and one junior trainer.
  • Brisbane Multicultural Art Centre (BEMAC) $14,956 - This project forms the first opportunity to utilise BEMAC's new state-of-the-art live streaming service (provided to each artist free of charge), funded by Department of Housing and Public Works.
  • Brisbane Powerhouse P/L ATF Brisbane Powerhouse Foundation $20,000 - OUT! will feature more than 15 local, mostly emerging musical theatre and cabaret performers from the queer creative community.
  • Brunswick Street Venue Trading as Fortitude Music Hall $9,350 - There will be 44 comedians programmed across one month of shows.
  • Bundaberg Regional Council $16,275 - Counterpilot is a collective of six Queensland based interdisciplinary artists creating interactive performance works and activating audiences with new technology and transmedia storytelling.
  • Burdekin Shire Council $20,000 - Drive your car into the Ayr Showgrounds Ring and watch the show from a painted ground circle which is to be painted around the vehicle so the group of patrons can set-up their own space to watch this unique live music event.
  • Charters Towers Regional Council - World Theatre $19,298 - Flipside Circus will tour and provide practical teaching experience and immersive upskilling for the junior trainer.
  • City Parklands Services Pty Ltd $20,000 – City Parklands spring program will give an opportunity to  emerging artists and those who normally would be programmed on festival line-ups vs stand-alone shows. 
  • Creative Collective Cultural Community Inc $12,350 - New emerging acts, sourced through Logan Live, LCC /RASN helps create local audience development.
  • Cupo $14,200 - A program of inspiring theatre, comedy and cabaret invites new audiences into our independently run venue.
  • Easy speakers Pty Ltd $19,750 –  will enable Black Bear Lodge to book local acts over the formative period of reopening, supporting both emerging artists and audience development during the pandemic.
  • Elements Collective $15,700 - Our Block Party & Halloween events are designed to include local & emerging talent. In December we invite our local audience and community back into the space to celebrate a year past with a line-up of musical talent.
  • Empire Theatres $20,000 – to present a work from Queensland Ballet during the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers.
  • Flinders Shire Council $6,090 - Funny Mummies is a stand-up comedy showcase. This style of performance will encourage audiences to return to our venue post COVID-19 and encourage all members of our community to engage in arts and cultural activities in our venue.
  • Food Focus Australia Pty Ltd Trading as NightQuarter $20,000 - The 'Sunny Coast Sounds' program will exclusively feature emerging Sunshine Coast based artists with 100% of funding being distributed between 40 individual original music acts in the form of artist fees.
  • Fraser Coast Tourism & Events Ltd $12 000 – supporting a program of local artists as part of the weekly Food 'n' Groove Fridays and Maryborough Markets.
  • GKI Hideaway $20,000 - Country on Keppel incorporates a "Talent Search" where young QLD performers have a chance to be named the inaugural Country on Keppel talent search winner as well as play with established and well known musicians in a professional setting.
  • Goondiwindi Regional Council $5,299 - Funny Mummies is a stand-up comedy showcase. Comedy is a particularly popular genre within this regional council.
  • Gympie Regional Council $20,000 - The Live and Local Music Series will continue to support local and Queensland artists with at least 20% local and 80% within a two hour drive of Gympie.
  • Hallmark Group 15 Caxton Pty Ltd $18,950 - Play local will support re-engagement with the local musical community - supporting both rising home grown artists and Queensland audience development.  
  • HOTA Home of the Arts $19,790 - At least 8 artists identify as emerging and 6 artists would also be making their HOTA mainstage debut, introducing our audiences and new local talent to each other.
  • Imperial Hotel Eumundi $14,500 – Line-up of local bands to perform combining local talent with a strong following, emerging artists, and bands who have repeatedly shown solid ticket sales in the area.
  • Jumping Goats Bar $14,140 - Musicians scheduled for 2020 are emerging, including four recent graduates of the Conservatorium of Music GC.
  • Kuranda Amphitheatre Society $11,600 - Older performers will assist with the new/emerging artists by including them in each act and supporting on stage to ensure the new acts will feel confident to play to a new audience.
  • Livingstone Shire Council $3,650 - MZAZA's performance of 'The Birth and Death of Stars' offers our community accessible world music and will develop the local audiences' appetite for quality music.
  • Logan City Council $20,000 - Council proposes to host pre-show performances. These will be scheduled immediately before the 'main act' with new and emerging local performers who have participated in Logan Live Boost professional development series.
  • Mackay Regional Council $20,000 - The program consists of Mackay and Queensland based artists and pays homage to the continued support, development and connection with our venue and audiences.
  • Maranoa Regional Council $5,829 - Funny Mummies is a stand-up comedy showcase. Comedy is a popular art form in regional/remote communities that attracts a diverse audience and contributes to local audience development.
  • Metro Arts Ltd $20,000 - The Good Room and Polytoxic are established companies with a strong audience base. 
  • Mos Desert Clubhouse Pty Ltd $19,625 - Desert TV, Mo's professional and HD live streaming service, will see artists filmed live and streamed, alongside pre-recorded filming and streaming. 
  • Murweh Shire Council $5,299 - Funny Mummies is a stand-up comedy showcase.
  • Music Broadcasting Society of Queensland Ltd $14,400 - The concert of women composers will introduce the audience to emerging women composers to broaden the musical experience of the local audience.
  • Old Museum $19,348 – Funding will include Bearded Bingo by Briefs Factory - a NEW work created by Briefs will develop a new audience segment for Briefs & Old Museum specifically aimed to reinvigorate and reinvent the tired morning melody genre.
  • Paroo Shire Council $5,687 - Funny Mummies is a stand-up comedy showcase. Comedy is a popular art form in regional/remote communities that attracts a diverse audience and contributes to local audience development.
  • Queensland Theatre Company $20,000 - THE HOLIDAYS is a multigenerational story following the Holiday family, Mum, Dad and their son Oliver, as they head on an unexpected road trip to granddad’s seaside shack.
  • Quilpie Shire Council $14,878 - Flipside Circus will tour and provide practical teaching experience and immersive upskilling for the junior trainer.
  • Redland Performing Arts Centre $4,500 - The Joe Geia Band will take the audiences on a journey across Australia (and time) through Joe’s iconic songs.
  • Rockhampton Regional Council $20,000 - The Broadway and Beyond model has been born from development of local Rockhampton artists. The show has been performed in Rockhampton annually at smaller venues for several years, at one time occurring as a fundraiser for the Central Queensland Performing Arts Foundation. 
  • Sit Down Comedy Productions $18,040 - SDCC has a rich history of supporting emerging artists with many of Australia’s top comedians having started their careers in the SDCC Open Mic program.
  • Somerset Regional Council $19,186 - Play Local funding will support new innovative public performances and workshops that will engage artists new to the Somerset community.
  • The Brightside Brisbane $20,000 – showcasing a series of local artists including Bugs, Nerve, Butterfingers, Waax.
  • The Events Centre, Caloundra $20,000 – funding will support Writers Republic who are producing a Sunshine Coast Comedy Festival in the near future.
  • Tanks Arts Centre $20,000 - Each show will embed a local support act programmed firstly to suit the breadth and depth of regional performers existing in our Council catchment, secondly to support the flow of the evening's programming and thirdly to offer the local artist as much exposure to a new audience as possible.
  • The Met Hotel $19,500 – to present a series of performances by local musicians.
  • The Sideshow Hub Inc $20,000 - This program will offer employment opportunities for 36 qld artists and practitioners, offering new opportunities for these artists to establish and re-establish their audiences after the devastating effects of covid-19 restrictions on the performing arts.
  • The Tivoli Theatre $20,000 - The OPEN SEASON Music Series is also strategically positioned alongside the 2020 BIGSOUND Program and the newly revitalised Valley Fiesta Program in order to maximise the use of resources and publicity over the period.
  • The Triffid $20,000- A number of the artists booked have been listed on Triple J's Unearthed as prime examples of up and coming Queensland artists.
  • The Zoo $20,000- Funding will provide much needed support in ensuring the sustainability in booking local line-ups which as a venue we are already committed to and have demonstrated through our "Anti-Social" program. 
  • Western Downs Regional Council $9,741 - expand the ‘Groovin into Town' offering and engage a variety of local and Queensland based emerging and professional music acts.
  • Winton Shire Council $14,948 – Flipside Circus and Funny Mummies
  • Woolly Mammoth $19,680 – Queensland artists will engage with the local audience and aid their experience breaking in to the ‘big time’


Information about the fund

Applications opened: 3 July 2020 

Applications closed: 5pm 27 July 2020


Supporting documents

Play Local Fund support documents: guidelines (DOCX) (327.86 KB) and frequently asked questions  (DOCX) (318.95 KB) and important information for applicants


Eligibility criteria

Play Local applicants must:

  • be based in Queensland
  • meet the definition for a live music venue or performance arts venue as stated in the Play Local guidelines
  • provide evidence of regular artistic programming over the last 12 months

Additional eligibility criteria apply. See Play Local guidelines for a full list of eligibility requirements.