...is all about creating new opportunities for Victorians of all abilities and ages to play music with others. It is the second major project in the Victoria Makes Music program (CMVic's instrumental music making program). It has been made possible with grants from Helen Macpherson Smith Trust and the RE Ross Trust, and promises of help from our many wonderful volunteers.
If you love the sound of this project then why not get involved?
How will all this be done?
By establishing at least ten new ‘Street Bands’ – these are bands consisting of all types of acoustic instrument played in street processions and community events. They are fun, informal, and highly accessible to varied abilities and instruments. Open to all, regardless of age, ability, instrument or training, they bring people together, to make music together. Think horns, think percussion, think dancing, think New Orleans, feel hot-blooded Latin musical passion with a distinctly Aussie twist. Great examples of some of Victoria's existing such bands are the Morwell Drum Circle and Havana Palava. New groups will be started, each with their own style, and they will become part of a network of such bands sharing tunes, instrumental skills, and leadership skills through workshops and website discussions, all culminating in an inaugural Street Band Festival.
When will all this happen?
It's happening! The project began in 2015 and will run for 3 years, culminating in the Street Band Festival in 2017.
Why is this project important?
Music making with others is a fantastic way of combating social isolation and depression, particularly in communities under economic and environmental threat (e.g. rising unemployment and recovery from environmental disasters in regional communities). Local bands provide a focus for local community festivals, processions and events, and often involve local school children too.
Where will the new bands be located?
All over Victoria, but focussing on under-resourced and disadvantaged areas across the state. So far we have bands in Prahran, Inverloch, Bellbrae, Sunshine, Kyneton and Footscray.
How will the bands be brought together as a community?
By producing the inaugural Street Band Festival in 2017, with smaller annual events and networking workshops throughout the 3 year project.
What happens at the end of the project?
Our ambition is that the bands become self sustaining. With the help of CMVic promotion, bands will raise money for ongoing support through paid gigs, local community grants, and fees from participants. Leaders emerging from the new bands themselves will also be supported through leadership weekends and ongoing mentorship support from CMVic.
How much does the project cost and how will the funds be used?
The total project cost is $172,000, to be used on: facilitators and mentors to start and support the new music groups; commissioning new musical arrangements; networking and mentoring events for the new bands, including production of the inaugural CMVic Street Band Festival in 2017.