Let’s get this straight, live music venues and clubs are still restricted to about 30% of their regular capacity.

The State Government has announced unrestricted capacities for seated venues and 75% capacities for outdoor venues, but for non-seated venues and clubs, a density quotient of 1 person per 2 square metres still applies

We can’t get close to the 75% capacity the Government announced last week, because we do not have the floor space. This has created mass confusion in our industry — for musicians, for our patrons, and in the broader community. The density quotient restrictions are a stranglehold on live music venues and clubs that have been on their knees for a year.


75,000 footy fans can share public transport, turnstiles, toilets, food stalls and exits, but we can’t have 200 people dancing in a club.

75,000 footy fans can cheer on their team at the G, but 1000 music fans can’t gather in a live music venue and cheer for their favourite band.

“Indoors is different,” they told us. 

But as of yesterday, you can have a full house indoors if it’s a seated venue. 

You can sit in a bumper-to-bumper audience and watch Harry Potter and The Cursed Child for three hours, no problem. You can watch the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra perform to a full house at the Arts Centre, no problem. But if you want to stand and watch a gig at The Corner or The Tote, it’s still 1 person per two square metres.


These inconsistent rules are killing Victoria's live music venues and clubs, which are the critical infrastructure of our music industry.

The Victorian State Government has made considerable investment into major outdoor live music events, but they are temporary. They have created further pressure on music venues by presenting artists that would otherwise have played in our venues. Once the government-funded outdoor music festivals go away, what stages will be left for these artists to play on?

We are asking the Victorian Government to follow the South Australian Government’s leadership and increase the density quotient for non-seated venues to 3 people per 4 square metres.

Give us a fighting chance to get back on our feet.


12 Bar / 170 Russell / 24 Moons / Aireys Pub / Angel Music Bar / Bad Decisions / Bar 303 / Bar Open / Bar Oussou / Barwon Club Hotel / Barwon Heads Hotel / Beaches of Mornington / Beavs Bar Geelong / Bendigo Hotel / Blackcat / Bloom Nightclub / Blues Train Queenscliff / Bodriggy / Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine) / Brown Alley / Brunswick Ballroom / Brunswick Green / Cactus Room / Café Gummo / Caravan Music Club / Charles Weston Hotel / Chasers / Cherry Bar / Circus Bar / Clifton Hill Brewpub / Club Pandora / Colour / Commercial Hotel / Corner Hotel / Dart and Marlin Warrnambool / Dr Freeman / Dr Morse / Eddie's Bandroom / Edinburgh Castle / Electric / Elwood Lounge / Evie’s Bar & Diner / Evelyn Hotel / Ferdydurke / Fiftyfive /  George's Bar / Glamarama / God's Kitchen Mornington / Grace Darling Hotel / Grand Hotel Mornington / Grovedale Hotel / Howler / Inflation / Jazz Lab / John Curtin Hotel / Kay Street Entertainment Complex / La Di Da / Labour In Vain / Laundry Bar Fitzroy / Leadbeater Hotel / Live at the Bundy / Longplay / Loop / Lucky Coq / Macedon Railway Hotel / Main Bar Ballarat / Max Watts  / Meeniyan Town Hall / Memo Music Hall / Micawber Tavern / Mount Erica Hotel / Mr Boogie Man Bar / Musicland Fawkner / Nevemind Bar / New Guernica / Northcote Social Club / One Six One / Open Studio / Paris Cat / Paynesvlle Wine Bar / Penny Black / Piano Bar Ballarat / Piano Bar Bendigo / Piano Bar Colac / Piano Bar Geelong / Pier Bandroom / Pinnancle Hotel / Pistol Pete's Food n Blues / Prince Bandroom / Red Hill Hotel Chewton / Revolver Upstairs / Ronnie's Blue Bar / Royal Oak Hotel / Rubix Warehouse / Section 8 Bar / Sooki Lounge / Star Hotel Yackandandah / Star of The West Hotel / Stay Gold / Swamplands Bar / Tanswell Beechworth / The B.East / The Bergy Seltzer / The Butterfly Club / The Carlton Club / The Courthouse Theatre Bright / The Croxton Bandroom / The Drunken Poet / The Eastern / The Emerson / The Esplanade Hotel (The Espy) / The Forum Melbourne / The Fox Hotel / The Gasometer Hotel / The Gem / The General (Mt Hotham) / The Gertrude / The Horn African Cafe / The Night Cat / The Old Bar / The Rainbow Hotel / The Retreat Hotel / The Thornbury Theatre / The Toff in Town / The Tote / The Vine Hotel Wangaratta / The Windsor Castle / The Wool Exchange / Theatre Royal Castlemaine / Torquay Hotel / Tramway Hotel / Volta / Wandi Pub Wandiligong / Wesley Anne / Westernport Hotel San Remo / Westwood Hotel / Whole Lotta Love / Workshop / Yah Yahs / Yarraville Club / Yarra Hotel (Abbotsford)



Love live music? DJs and clubbing? Take a minute to like and follow S.O.S. on Facebook or Instagram, and let the Victorian Government know you want them to help the music scene get back on its feet.



We represent independent small to medium music venues across Victoria, including some of the most iconic and long-standing music venues in the country. We are not the big end of town - we are not in the business of hosting stadium tours. We are the pubs, theatres and clubs where Australian musicians get their start and hone their craft.

We are the venues where Victorian music lovers see shows not just once a year, but every night of the week. Our venues nurture the part of Victoria’s music culture that is uniquely Victorian, providing community, connectedness and wellbeing to people across the state.


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