Rather than seeing an extension of JobKeeper, festival promoter David Frazer wants to have a more level playing field for events going into the second half of the year.
Mr Frazer, who is the organiser of Echuca-Moama's Riverboats Music Festival, said seeing sporting events operate at a higher capacity than music events was frustrating.
Riverboats Festival went ahead in February, 2020, but its 2021 show was cancelled.
In February, Mr Frazer and the Riverboats Festival signed an open letter to the federal government calling for the extension of JobKeeper for the music and live entertainment sector.
He said he and other music promotors were not expecting a last minute JobKeeper reprieve for a specific state of sector.
We just want the ability to trade at a level that is still responsible...that allows (us) to be viable.Riverboats Festival director David Frazer
"We have accepted JobKeeper wouldn't continue," he said. "But we don't want hand outs, we just want the ability to trade at a level that is still responsible from a health and safety perspective that allows (us) to be viable.
"The frustration promotors and venue operators have is the capacity limitation seems exclusive to our sector.
"The fact you can have 75,000 at the MCG but venues and unseated festivals are still working on density quotas seems grossly unfair. It's killing a lot of businesses.
"We're all private operators, we're used used to taking the risk when you put a show on sale but we just want an equal playing field.
"Venues and events are still trading at 20, 30 or 40 per cent but now we have major crowds at the MCG, the Australian Open proceeded but live music is still getting screwed. A band performing to a 30 per cent crowd has to play three times or more to receive same income (as a full show)."
Mr Frazer said sharing facilities at seated events was just as dangerous has having people roam freely at a music festival.
"The argument that (footy crowds) work because patrons are seated doesn't hold water because you go to the MCG and you still need to share bathrooms, queue for beer and use trains," he said.
"Why is it any different for our industry? It is absurd that people can now have up to 100 people at their home - even if that home is a tiny apartment - but small venues have to adhere to the one person per two-square-metre rule despite having contact tracing processes in place including QR codes, not to mention hand sanitisers throughout. In a way venues are far safer than these private environments and yet we're unable to trade.
"If limitations and density quotas continue as they are for the second half of 2021, there's going to be a need for more government support and events will go on life support.
"The big message from is to let us trade and show we can do it safely. Everyone wants shows to return and people want to get back festivals safely. Our sector is saying can we deliver that safely. Let us trade and there won't need to be hand outs."
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