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The Musicians Australia Minimum Fee

Australia’s live music sector has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. In response, State and Federal Governments introduced a number of publicly funded grants to bring gigs back.

In early 2021, we canvassed musicians and undertook research to establish a what a fair minimum fee would look like. Having arrived at $250, our members overwhelmingly endorsed and approved this amount as the ‘$250 Musicians Australia Minimum Performance Fee’.

Thanks to the collective work of our members, Musicians Australia has since received endorsement for the $250 minimum fee from the South Australian, Queensland, Western Australian, Victorian and Australian Capital Territory state/territory governments. Please see here for a list of government funding and recipients.

What is a minimum fee?

A minimum fee is a fee floor, for any musician, playing anywhere, for any audience.

Why $250?

The $250 Musicians Australia Minimum Fee is based on the related ‘3 hour call’ as set out in the Live Performance Award, which requires that musicians are paid between $150-200 for a 3 hour call, and an additional $50-100 in allowances (e.g. set up time, meals, supply of instruments, and travel).

This reflects a minimum standard for all gigs, providing a guarantee that a musician will be paid the pre-specified Musicians Australia minimum fee for gigs 3 hours or less in duration.

This minimum standard can be increased with an additional amount – known as the ‘Artist Fee’ component – but it cannot be undercut.

How do I determine my Total Fee?

Your Total Fee in any performance contract is comprised of two core components:

  1. The Musicians Australia Minimum Fee ($250); and
  2. The Artist’s Fee

The first component of your fee is the ‘$250 Musicians Australia Minimum Fee’. This is a guaranteed minimum, which cannot be undercut.

The second component is your ‘Artist’s Fee’. This includes additional adjustments which take into account factors including gig time that exceeds 3 hours, local market rates, as well as your personal premium.

For instance, if you regularly charge $350 for a 3 hour gig, then the artist premium/market rate component of your fee is $100, which is in addition to the $250 minimum fee.

What happens if a venue refuses to pay me the $250 Musicians Australia Minimum Fee?

  1. Submit details about the gig to the Gig Map and we will be in touch with you.
  2. If you are a member, contact Member Services for further advice and support.

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Musicians Australia acknowledges the traditional custodians and cultures of the lands and seas on which we live and work. We pay our respects to all First Nations peoples, elders and ancestors. We acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded, and stand in solidarity towards a shared future.