Australia’s live music sector: an occupation-based analysis

Live music is an important part of Australia’s social and cultural fabric, but there is limited information about the sector’s size and composition. This research seeks to estimate the number of workers in the live music ecosystem and their characteristics.

In the analysis, the Bureau of Communications, Arts and Regional Research (BCARR) considers all occupations required to put on a live music event. This includes primary workers, which are essential to live music (for example, musicians, technicians), supporting workers, where only a portion of their job function may involve live music (for example, ticketing, security, music teachers) and auxiliary workers, whose job indirectly supports live music (for example, hospitality staff).

Key findings

The live music sector employed 41,000 workers in 2019-20, an increase of 5,000 workers from 2015-16. This includes workers across the whole live music ecosystem, including 14,200 primary workers, 10,000 supporting workers and 16,800 auxiliary workers.

COVID-19 was highly disruptive for the live music sector. The report acknowledges the impact that the pandemic had on performances, attendance and ticket revenue.

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