Event Producer Resources

Rouge, Midsumma Festival 2024 by Suzanne Balding

Welcome Event Producers!

We’ve compiled a mini-library of resources to equip you with knowledge, tips and templates that will ensure your Midsumma Festival event is the best it can be.

The topics covered below are the perfect springboard for your planning, helping you get on the front foot of tricky things like copyright compliance or fundamental prep around accessibility. This foresight will reduce the likelihood of any last minute fires you’ll need to put out in the notoriously busy festival period.

If you're new to producing events, no worries! One of the joys of Midsumma is that it provides space for emerging queer artists to experiment and hone their craft. These resources are designed to support your experience with Midsumma Festival, and also demonstrate ideas of best practices within the arts and culture sector.

We feel that inside know-how on how to run great events shouldn’t be considered an industry secret and this page remains a work in progress which will continue to evolve as we collaborate with stakeholders, industry professionals and our diverse community members. We review these resources periodically to ensure they remain relevant and effective.

The information below is tailored to arts events, but it can be applied to other formats too, including parties, workshops, and sports. 

This producer kit provides information on: 

Producer Updates e-news

Before we dive in, you should check to see if you’re receiving our Producer Updates e-newsletter. 

From the registration period through to February, every few weeks we’ll email out a summary of upcoming deadlines, new opportunities, and timely advice on how to run a stellar Midsumma event. It’s a great way to make sure you’re on track. 

You can subscribe to these via your Eventotron registration. To check if you’re subscribed, or if you have any other event-related questions, please email our Presenter Services Coordinator at [email protected].

Creating a realistic plan for your finances from the outset can help ensure a smooth process and avoid unwanted budget busters around the bend!

View our Budget Template

Funding

If you're seeking funding, research a variety of grant options and carefully consider the timelines for these grants to ensure they will be suitable. 

The best advice we can give you when looking at funding is to start early! Many funding rounds close three months before they notify you of an outcome, so be sure to plan ahead!

Go to our list of grant sources to get a taste of some of the funding opportunities on offer:

View Our List of Grant Sources

Check out Sassy Red PR for some great tips on Grants, Support and Funding Resources.

If you are running short on time and you've missed out on funding rounds, you might think of options such as crowdfunding, donation campaigns or even sponsorship.

Crowdfunding and Donations

Crowdfunding is an online fundraising campaign for a specific project where you raise money directly from your network. You set a fundraising target, people pledge an amount that they would like to give – usually in exchange for some form of reward – and the amount pledged is remitted to you if the target is reached.

The Business Victoria website has useful resources about Crowdfunding Basics



Some crowdfunding and donation platforms to check out:

  1. Australian Cultural Fund - The Australian Cultural Fund is a fundraising platform for Australian artists, managed by Creative Partnerships Australia. This platform is not a reward based approach and every donation above $2 is tax deductible.
  2. Pozible - Pozible is an Australia-based crowdfunding platform and community-building tool for creative projects and ideas.
  3. Go Fund Me - Over $3 billion raised for personal causes! GoFundMe is a fundraising website to raise money online, often utilised for social causes.
  4. Indiegogo - Indiegogo is where entrepreneurial projects come to life – amplified by a community of backers who believe the world benefits when every idea gets an equal opportunity

Many crowdfunding platforms offer tax-deductible donations, which can incentivise your backers to give more. Please check each platform's policy for further details around tax-deductible donations.

Sponsorship

Many companies are eager to provide support (cash or in-kind) in return for recognition. There are a number of different types of sponsorship such as major partners, small cash sponsors and in-kind supporters. For all partnerships, you need to consider how this will be a mutually beneficial relationship and what the association means for both parties.

Small cash: These types of sponsorship arrangements are easy to negotiate and are more likely to be with companies who have the flexibility to approve cash support on short timelines. What contacts do you already have in small businesses? What organisations share your values? Is there a thematic link between the project and a particular organisation? Think creatively...

In-kind: This is when a company or individual provides goods or services as opposed to cash. Consider what your project requires. Are there opportunities for a company to support you by providing something that you have already budgeted for? Do you need specific equipment for your event? Could a marketing or printing company provide services pro-bono?

Major Partners: These take time, are often difficult to secure and work best when they are a meaningful reciprocal relationship. If you see a compelling alignment with another organisation, have access to a contact and a long lead-time...go forth!

Great tips: 

Please note: All sponsorship arrangements are between the Producer and Sponsor. Midsumma is not liable for any dealings and cannot guarantee any benefits from the festival.

Maximising Your Event's Potential! 

Effective marketing and publicity are crucial to unlocking the full potential of your event. Here are some tips to help you promote your event successfully for the next festival:

 

1) Create Eye-Catching Visuals

  • Capture attention with high-quality promotional images or engaging videos. 
  • Use vibrant colours, dynamic angles, and compelling content to stand out.

2) Craft a Powerful Media Release

  • Use our template provided here to write a clear, concise, and engaging media release for journalists, media outlets, and venues. 
  • Highlight the unique aspects of your event and why it matters.

3) Find Your Hook

  • Determine what makes your event unique and why people should attend. 
  • This could be a special guest, a unique theme, or an exclusive experience.

4) Develop a Comprehensive Strategy 

  • Plan how you will reach your audience with a well-rounded strategy.
    Utilise a mix of:
  • Social Media: Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, X (Twitter), and TikTok are essential for reaching a broad audience.
  • E-Communications: Regular emails to your mailing list keep your audience informed and engaged.
  • Print: Posters, flyers, and brochures can still be effective, especially for local events.
  • Digital Presence: Maintain an updated website, blogs, and online listings to ensure your event is easily discoverable.

5) Leverage Influencers & Partnerships

  • Collaborate with influencers and local businesses to expand your reach. 
  • Influencers can provide authentic endorsements and broaden your audience.

6) Utilise Paid Advertising

  • Invest in targeted social media ads and Google AdWords. 
  • This will help reach specific demographics that align with your event's audience.

7) Dedicated Marketing & PR Team

  • Midsumma Festival works with Zilla&Brook, a well-established and influential PR firm focusing on the arts, for the festival’s overall publicity, with targeted coverage opportunities to key local and national media outlets. The festival Program Guide and media releases will be shared with key industry journalists/critics.
  • While Zilla&Brook will consider every event registered at Midsumma as an integral part of Midsumma Festival’s tailor-made PR campaign, consider bringing in a PR professional who can focus solely on your publicity efforts. This will help you concentrate on producing the event.

Note. We highly recommend you develop a detailed marketing plan for your event. For comprehensive guidance, explore our extensive Marketing and Publicity Guide. This resource provides all the information you need to execute a stellar campaign.

 

Advertise in the Midsumma Printed Program Guide

As a Midsumma Festival Producer, you receive a 20% discount on advertising your event in the Midsumma Festival Printed Guide. The program guide is launched in late November, and advertising inquiries typically close by the end of August.

For advertising rates and specifications and further information, email [email protected]

 

Special Advertising Rates for Midsumma Events

Mr Moto
For flyer printing and distribution.Contact Indra at [email protected]

JOY 94.9 Radio Station
JOY 94.9 offers a discounted promotional package for Midsumma Festival events at $300, suitable for independent artists. Venues can opt for a $1,000 package, both providing a week of on-air and digital messaging, along with interview opportunities. Express interest at [email protected]

 

PR Agency Recommendations for Your Event

Sassy Red PR
Specialises in working with independent artists, non-profits, and small to medium arts organisations.

Contact: Eleanor Howlett

Email: [email protected]

Website: sassyred.com.au


Encore PR

Focused on getting you noticed by magazines, newspapers, radio, online, and TV.

Contact: Lynda Buckley

Email: [email protected]


Asha Holmes Publicity
Focused on comedy shows, theatre and films.

Contact: Asha Holmes

Email: [email protected]



Further Resources & Contact 

  • Midsumma Media Kit (coming soon)


For further information, please contact
Timothée Nicot (he/him)
Marketing & Communications Manager [email protected]

 

Registered Event Producers are granted a licence to use the Midsumma logo on relevant promotional material (posters, website, catalogues, etc).

There are strict guidelines around the use of the Midsumma logo, and we require a minimum of 48 business hours to approve any material that includes the Midsumma logo. When you have completed producing your promotional materials, please send to [email protected] for approval.

Read Midsumma Logo Style Guide.

Download the current Midsumma logo suite.

 

Is your project accessible? Consider ways in which people with a disability might have barriers to accessing your event. These resources below can help you to remove barriers.

ArtsHub has a great video for artists and producers by Arts Access Victoria CEO Caroline Bowditch that offers some useful advice. You can find the full transcript here

 

Gender and Sexuality Inclusivity

Accessibility isn’t just about wheelchair ramps and Auslan interpreters. Although they are important - it’s also about attitude and language. At Midsumma, we actively encourage full diversity at events regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation. 

For more ways to create an open and respectful environment at your event, read through Midsumma's Inclusive Language Guide. This document contains definitions, explanations and handy tips that are useful in avoiding making assumptions about a person’s gender or sexual orientation or using language that can cause offence. Check out our Inclusive Language Guide to see if the language you are using is right for you and your audience.

Accessible Bathrooms

What's on the bathroom door? Ask your venue to use gender neutral signage on bathrooms to help trans and gender non-binary peoples feel more comfortable at your event. Signs that advertise the facilities available, rather than describing the attendees, work best. You are free to download and use our signs: toilet, urinal or gender neutral and accessible toilet.

Wheelchair Access

Wheelchair AccessibleNot all venues are wheelchair accessible. Read through the information below to ensure your venue is truly accessible to people using wheelchairs.

Access: Can a wheelchair user get into and around your venue? At least one entry should be 1.2m wide without steps.
Toilets: Is there an accessible bathroom? Make sure it isn't being used as a storage cupboard and doesn't require a key from venue staff.
Parking: Is there accessible parking or a wheelchair friendly drop-off point?
Free Movement: Does the venue have good internal movement circulation? Could someone in a wheelchair 1.2m wide easily manoeuvre inside? Are there steps inside the venue that would prevent a wheelchair user from fully participating in your event?
Signage: If your accessible entrance is not the main entrance, has the venue established good signage and way-finding for wheelchair users? 
Whether or not to include this icon will be determined by your venue when they register their venue in Eventotron.

Hearing Loop Services

Hearing Loop servicesDoes your venue provide a hearing loop service? A hearing loop service is a hearing device that amplifies all on-stage audio for people who are hard-of-hearing.

Whether or not to include the Hearing Loop icon will be determined by you when you register your venue in Eventotron.

Auslan Interpreted Sessions

Having an Auslan interpreter at your event increases access for Deaf audience members. 

It's a great idea to book an Auslan Interpreter early - if the event is still in development, you can send over information and scripts closer to the event date (usually around 2 weeks prior to the event). 

AUSLAN RESOURCES

Arts Access Victoria

Auslan Stage Left 

Captioned Sessions

Captions help make your event more accessible for Deaf and Hard of hearing audiences. 

There are two types of captioning - open caption and closed captioning. Open captions are available all the time, such as on a video projection in an art gallery or surtitles at an opera. Closed captions are able to be switched on and off by the viewer, such as subtitles on online streaming services. 

Services available include AI captioning, which auto-captions live as you speak, such as on Zoom or subtitles on live television. Alternatively, if you can provide a script ahead of time (even a loose one), you can book live captioning for your event using a captioning service. This works well for comedy, theatre and musicals. 

CAPTIONING RESOURCES

Arts Access Victoria

AI Live

AI Media

Relaxed Sessions

Relaxed sessions are designed to benefit people with a range of access requirements, such as Autism, sensory sensitivities, anxiety and dementia. 

Adjustments to the event are made to provide a more relaxed environment, such as avoiding using strobe or bright lights, no loud or sudden sounds (such as gun shots) and allowing talking and moving around during the performance. 

RELAXED SESSION RESOURCES

Arts Centre Melbourne

Touch Tours

Touch tours provide blind or low-vision audience  members with the opportunity to interact with and experience the physical elements of the event. This might be interacting with physical elements of the stage or venue, such as the set or costumes, and usually takes place before the event. 

TOUCH TOUR RESOURCES

Arts Access Victoria

Vitae Veritas

Audio Described Sessions

Audio description provides blind or low-vision audience members with descriptions and narrations of the visual elements and movements of the event and venue. 

This can be provided live through a service provider (such as Vitae Veritas) or via a pre-recorded file to be played before an event or visit to a venue. 

AUDIO DESCRIPTION RESOURCES

Arts Access Victoria

Vitae Veritas

Digital Sessions

If your venue has the facilities to record or live-stream events, this is a great way to offer an accessible event. 

Live-streams and on demand videos are available to view at home, and can also be captioned. This means that you can offer an alternative format for someone who cannot attend the event in person, or cannot access the event if the venue is not step-free.  

You can upload on demand or live-stream performances straight to YouTube, which audiences will be able to access after purchasing a ticket and at a specific date and time. 

Please email [email protected] if you'd like to know more about digital events. 

DIGITAL SESSION RESOURCES

Arts Access Victoria

Are you aware of all your legal requirements? Read on for: 

  • Example venue and artist agreement
  • Public liability insurance options 
  • A work cover policy
  • Music rights

Agreements

Establishing clear agreements between individuals, venues and/or organisations helps ensure that everyone involved is on the same page. Consider the dynamics of the working relationships necessary to bring your performance or venue to life. A robust agreement not only outlines expectations but also protects the interests of all parties involved.

ARTIST AGREEMENT

These are useful for producers who are hiring / contracting artists. Artist Agreements can cover: 

  • Dates of the project
  • The artist’s obligations (attendance at performances, rehearsals, workshops etc) 
  • Guidelines around giving interviews
  • Fees
  • Consent for filming / recording
  • And more

Download our example Artist Agreement

 

VENUE AGREEMENT

This can provide a secure arrangement for either rehearsal spaces or the venues where your event will be presented. It clarifies: 

  • Date of use
  • Duration of the event
  • Access for bump-in / bump-out
  • Fees
  • Guidelines for employing venue technicians
  • How box office earnings will be divided 
  • And more

Download our example venue agreement.

 

Insurance and Superannuation Obligations

PUBLIC LIABILITY INSURANCE

  • Have you got public liability insurance? This is insurance that protects you should a general public member sue you for injury. 
  • Midsumma requires you to have public liability insurance. Some providers of public liability insurance include: 
  • Duck for Cover
  • Allianz
  • and GIO.

 

SUPERANNUATION

Are you aware that on 1 July 2022, the minimum payment threshold used to determine eligibility for earning superannuation was removed? This means that employers will generally be required to make super guarantee contributions to eligible employees' super funds, regardless of how much the employee is paid. This may also include sole-trading artists who are employed on a project based, short term or seasonal contract. 

 

WORKCOVER INSURANCE

  • Are you likely to pay more than $7,500 per financial year in rateable remuneration (fees for your team)? Or do you have apprentices or trainees? Then you might be legally obliged to take out a WorkCover policy. For more information see Worksafe's Insurance obligations for employers.

 

HELP WITH ADMIN? 

  • Would you like someone else to handle all the finances, payroll, superannuation, WorkCover and other administration of your event? Contact Auspicious Arts.

Copyright

Are you playing music which is under copyright during your event or in the area in which your event takes place? You, or your venue, may need to apply for a licence.

OneMusic Australia can offer joint music licensing, formally distributed through APRA AMCOS and PPCA. Find out more info on categories and requirements at onemusic.com.au.

  • Are you looking to screen, perform, replicate, copy or modify an existing song, play, film or something else that is copyrighted? Make sure you have obtained the rights through the appropriate artist or agent and familiarise yourself with the Art Law Copyright Overview.

Got questions?

  • Do you need to know about unfair dismissal, fairness in the workplace and more? Visit the Fair Work Commission website.
  • Have you got questions that are specifically about the arts and the law? Arts Law is an excellent starting point.

This information is not intended to be a replacement for seeking legal advice. The information is only a starting place for your research into your rights and obligations under the law.

 

The purpose of a risk assessment is a way of identifying potential issues in advance and considering what the risks might be, what their impact will be and what can be done to reduce the risk.

A risk assessment may be required by your chosen venue and other presenting partners should you wish to take your event on tour.

Download our Risk Assessment Template, we highly recommend that you complete this in the lead up to your event.

When producing an event, it's important that you consider your future as a practitioner and whether you would like to present this event again.

Read Touring and Future Presentations to think about how to tour your work and how to make long-lasting connections for your practice, and check out our LGBTQIA+ Festivals page to see when other queer festivals are occurring around Australia.

This Live Performance Australia resource is great for COVID Safe Touring Guidelines (PDF) 

 

Next Step - Marketing and Publicity

To assist your event with cutting through the media and gaining the maximum amount of exposure possible, Midsumma Festival has put together this resource for you.

Event Registrations

Registrations to be part of the 2024 festival will open in early June 2023. For further inquiries email [email protected] or phone 03 9296 6600.

Principal Partners
Major Partners
Gold Partners