The State Theatre during the Sydney Film Festival.

Sydney Film Festival and the Australian International Movie Convention (AIMC) are among the events recently supported by the Federal Government’s Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund.

The $200 million fund, given out as competitive grants, is to assist arts businesses and organisations in putting on activities such as festivals, concerts, tours, productions and events.

A COVID-19 support measure, the fund initially stood at $75 million, but was topped up last week with an additional $125 million. Funds are available until the end of this year.

The second batch of funding for cultural institutions and events in New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia was announced this morning. The Victorian second round was announced on Tuesday, and other states are expected to follow in the coming days.

The 68th iteration of the Sydney Film Festival, which has been moved from June to August for 2021 only, has received $533,282, with the expectation the event create around 260 jobs.

The funding announcement hints that the 2021 festival will take place both physically and online, with the money to support: “A hybrid in-person/virtual festival of expertly-curated and cutting-edge films which enhance accessibility and restore a crucial link in the fractured Australian screen sector.”

Last year’s Sydney Film Festival was initially cancelled outright, before organisers pivoted to a smaller, online-only line-up of 33 films.

The National Association of Cinema Operators – Australasia (NACO) will receive $250,000 to present AIMC. Typically held in October on the Gold Coast, last year’s event was cancelled outright.

One of the other screen sector recipients is Coffs Harbour’s Screenwave International Film Festival, which receives $345,000 to host a series of outdoor events during and after the festival later this month.

The second round funding recipients per state, as announced so far:


OrganisationProject NameFundingDescription
The Trustee for Boogie Unit TrustBoogie Festival – Edition 14 (2021) and 15 (2022)$180,000The festival will bring Australian performing artists to its stages.
ShawCandyIndependent Regional Producer House Services for 3 Independent Regional development projects$60,060The project will provide independent regional artists with access to producer services through an independent regional Producer hub.
Fairgrounds Festival Pty LtdFairgrounds Festival$325,000A family-friendly music festival, offering world-class bands and a range of children’s entertainment.
Precarious Inc t/as Circus MonoxideCircus Monoxide – Reignition$231,173A presentation of shows that will employ professional artists and respond to COVID safe measures.
Sydney Film Festival68th Sydney Film Festival 2021: Hybrid Expansions$533,282A hybrid in-person/virtual festival of expertly-curated and cutting-edge films which enhance accessibility and restore a crucial link in the fractured Australian screen sector.
Bangarra Dance TheatreWaru – Life of the Little Turtle (working title)$229,868Waru will be developed as the first of an ongoing new audience offering, showcasing the stories and culture of the Torres Strait, led by critically acclaimed Bangarra artist Elma Kris.
Synergy & Taikoz LtdBOOM! International Festival of Percussion$80,000The festival will see large public concerts framing a series of performances, talks, masterclasses and workshops.
The Eleanor Dark FoundationBlue Mountains Writers’ Festival Reboot$76,349A four-day writers’ festival through which Australian writers will receive creative opportunities to present to a local and out-of-region audience.
Hayes Theatre Co LtdPacific Overtures$137,173Mixing elements of Kabuki theatre with the conventions of the Broadway musical, Pacific Overtures is an original, inventive, powerful and humorous theatrical experience.
The Sydney Fringe IncThe Sydney Fringe Festival 2021$371,323Presents the work of 2500 independent artists in 1600 individual public performances for local, inter-city and interstate audiences.
Australian Publishers AssociationBookNetAustralia and Australia Reads$566,000Industry-wide collaborations between BookNetAustralia and Australia Reads that will transform industry business practices nationwide, boost sales of Australian books, and promote reading.
The Woodland Production Company Pty LtdBallet Revolucion$285,000Leading Australian choreographers blend contemporary moves with classical/contemporary ballet and salsa to produce a unique dance fusion.
Musica Viva AustraliaMusica Viva National Digital and Regional Engagement Program$310,448An integrated program of regional residencies and digital touchpoints will expand and deepen Musica Viva’s engagement into regional communities across Australia.
Monkey Baa Theatre CompanyYong: A Chinese Australian Story$285,602Employing artists to develop and tour a new theatre production based on real incidents of the 1850s.
King Street CarnivalDeliver King Street Carnival Sydney$340,000A multi-sensory journey into Sydney’s Inner West through the acclaimed King Street Crawl.
Performing Lines LtdLocal Giants$400,000To deliver new artist, community and presenter participation models to unlock the cultural ambition of regional Australia.
River Sounds Pty LtdRiver Sounds$60,000Two day music festival in Bellingen with a diverse line up of high profile, emerging and First Nation artists.
Screenwave Australia Pty LtdSWIFF Expansion Project$345,000A series of outdoor events hosted during and after the Screenwave International Film Festival.


OrganisationProject NameFundingDescription
Crossroad Arts IncBreathe In- creative development$80,000A multimedia contemporary performance piece that uses alternative forms of communication including braille and hand signing.
National Association of Cinema Operators – AustralasiaAustralian International Movie Convention$250,000A movie convention that brings together exhibitors, distributors, producers and allied trades in one place.
Mirndiyan Gununa Aboriginal CorporationMornington Island Public Art and Celebration$82,100Artists will create two large-scale public works that will raise the profile of Mornington Island Art.
Major Events Gold Coast Pty LtdBlues on Broadbeach$200,000A reimagined COVID safe festival.
Playlab TheatrePlaylab Theatre – Accelerating Transformation and Sector Impact$399,846Developing and producing a diverse performance season for presentation in 2022.
TWO Festivals Pty LtdExpansion of Wynnum Fringe 2021$236,020  Expansion of Wynnum Fringe 2021: including new venues, more artists & creative works.
Of One Mind LimitedWOW Australia 2021$146,000A series of regional festival programs.
DeepBlue Orchestra Inc.Song to the Earth$77,855Reimagined orchestral installation for the opening of new major cultural precincts and a regional arts festival.
Aimon Scott ClarkNot On Your Rider$55,680A live music trivia show in which audience members will play along and are involved in a series of mini-games.
Outer Space Artist Run Initiative IncorporatedEmerging Art in the Public Domain$174,182An art-on-regional-billboards program  commissioning emerging Queensland-based artists to develop new works.
Umbrella Studio Association IncorporatedMakerspace Business Innovation Project$257,611To grow Makerspace, creating income for artists and artworkers.


OrganisationProject NameFundingDescription
International Art
Space Pty. Ltd
Spaced 4: Rural
Utopias re-imagined
$198,500A re-inventing of International Art
Space’s ongoing international program –
Cabaret Festival
Perth International
Cabaret Festival
$150,000Perth International Cabaret Festival,
Western Australia’s first dedicated
cabaret festival.
Sculpture at
Bathers Inc
Sculpture at Bathers
$288,984Free public visual arts event supporting
the creation, exhibition and sale of
FORM building a
state of
creativity, inc.
The Digital Eternal:
Aboriginal Artists of
the Pilbara and New
Media Narratives
$189,000Developing Pilbara’s Aboriginal artists
to engage with digital and audio-visual


OrganisationProject NameFundingDescription
Nicholas Clark Management Pty LtdNicholas Clark Management 2021/2022 COVID-safe Touring Program.$387,697  Five productions of innovative work for families, touring to 38 regional and metropolitan venues in five states.
Peking Duk Touring Pty LtdPeking Duk Australian Regional Tour$91,500Peking Duk Australian regional tour.
Stella Rose ProductionsTim Ferguson – A Fast Life On Wheels. Melbourne season 2021$25,000  Tim Ferguson’s Multiple Sclerosis has put him in a wheelchair. But MS won’t stop Australia’s busiest comedian, screenwriter, movie-maker, author and comedy writing teacher.
Melbourne Jazz LimitedMelbourne International Jazz Festival 2021$177,755Australian artists performing in 120 events across 30 venues at the Melbourne International Jazz Festival 2021.
The Trustee for Agency Projects TrustAddressing the digital divide for remote Indigenous Art Centres$785,000Agency will partner with Indigenous Art Centres to transform their community collections and galleries into interactive and immersive experiences.
Kids Promotions Pty LtdKIDS LIFE – Live Interactive Family Entertainment$411,679Innovative and reimagined offering of the annual calendar of LIVE touring concerts targeted to preschool children and their families.
Kadimah Jewish Cultural Centre and National LibraryKadimah Yiddish Theatre$220,000The creative development and production of Australian theatre works.
Melbourne Writers Festival IncMelbourne Writers Festival 2021 – Hybrid and COVID-safe$100,000Combines the large-scale, live festival events with the newly developed digital capabilities learned by the Festival in 2020.
A Thoughtful SpotLior & Domini Forster – Animal in Hiding$191,950A collaboration between critically acclaimed singer/songwriter Lior, together with emerging artist, Domini Forster.
The Brickman Exhibitions (Aust) Pty LtdBrickman Jurassic World$668,416A unique artistic exhibition — immersive scale re-creation of Jurassic World scenes in LEGO® bricks.
Photo Australia LtdPHOTO 2022 International Festival of Photography: Bringing art to the streets of Melbourne$290,000Commissioning ten Australian artists to create site specific works to be presented at iconic locations in central Melbourne and regional Victoria.
Theatre Works LimitedResurgence – Reactivating the independent sector$290,000Resurgence Initiative offers three targeted programs to restart, invest in and sustain the independent sector.
Velodrome Events Pty  LtdReunion Park$441,948A transformation of Melbourne’s iconic ‘Burnley Circus Site’ into Australia’s first COVID safe, bespoke, Winter friendly outdoor live music and performing arts venue.
Remix Summits PTY LtdREMIX Summit Sydney 2021$99,030REMIX will provide online summit access, develop year round online community support, including online courses and extending REMIX Academy. REMIX is located in Victoria and the Summit held in Sydney.
Good Life Music Festivals Pty LtdLost City u18s Music Festival$290,000Annual large-scale outdoor festival where teens are entertained with two stages of DJ’s and live music.
Victorian OperaVictorian Opera Digital Outreach$276,783An opera connecting regional, national, and international audiences with live performances, speaking to Australia’s First Nations heritage through operas both new and old.
Melbourne Street Eatz Pty LtdMelbourne Street Eatz Reloaded$205,676A celebration of music, food, arts and entertainment uniting and inspiring local and surrounding communities.
Essential Theatre IncorporatedThe Dream Laboratory$91,722Immersive theatrical experience created for The Palais Theatre, inspired by Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”.

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