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Perth suffering ongoing losses of live music venues

Perth suffering ongoing losses of live music venues
March 5, 2015

A range of people with interests in Perth's live music scene had been highlighting the loss of love music venues in Western Australia's major city.

A recent meeting on the issue was attended by more than 800 people, concerned dwindling numbers of both venues and audiences for live music.

Two venues in the inner city suburb of Northbridge, Deville's Pad and the Bakery are slated to close this year while in 2014 the Fly by Night musicians club in Fremantle lost its lease on the Artillery Hall and appeared set to close. However, the Club has now secured a one-year lease at Victoria Hall, with the potential to extend that for another four years.

Life is Noise Director Dave Cutbush said the number of middle-size venues disappearing off the Perth landscape was alarming.

Cutbush told Fairfax media "the small-to-medium-sized venue situation in Perth has been in bad shape for a while now, and with the impending closure of The Bakery and Devilles Pad, we are confronted with an emergency situation.

"There is real pressure on the small amount of dedicated music venues in Perth."

Cutbush, the former Music Director of community radio station RTR FM, described the venue situation in Perth as "desperate".

Earlier he had told the ABC that while public support for the arts was strong during the Perth International Arts Festival and associated fringe festival, it was weak for the rest of the year.

Cutbush explained "we don't have enough venues for our live musicians and our artists in Perth and we don't have enough people going to these events.

"Everyone needs to make a commitment to go out and discover art and participate, not just for four weeks a year but 12 months a year."

The closure of The Bakery, which has been run by not-for-profit organisation Artrage since 2002, would leave a major hole in the arts scene, he added.

Cutbush is backing plans for a steering committee called More Music Arts Venues Perth, to give the group some clout when lobbying the Western Australian Government for funding.




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