The tyranny of distance: Viability and relevance in regional live music performance
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Before the development of audio recording technologies, music was performed 'live' to an audience. As the most primal way to experience music, live music performances remain a popular social activity, and yet in many respects live music is under threat. This paper draws together two recent research projects on live music and regulation in Western Australia. The findings suggest that high costs, limited returns and current funding strategies inhibit the ability of regional areas to create live music opportunities and, in turn, the ability of musicians to develop regional audiences and work with communities. Implications include the need to review funding strategies so that intra-state touring and community engagement are considered alongside the usual inter-state and international activities; formalised touring circuits and networks of stakeholders are established; and musicians are encouraged to engage with communities beyond performance, creating additional activities during an otherwise reduced working week.
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