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A message to all members from your President, Jeff Markham


To all Members of the Band Association of NSW,

This current crisis has affected us all in many ways and the BANSW is in no way different to everyone else in this regard.

The Management Committee held an emergency meeting yesterday to discuss the options around our current advertised events. We believe that wherever possible, our events will proceed. They may be deferred to a date later in the year, however, we feel it very important that 2020 is not seen as where everything was just cancelled. The health and well-being of our community are foremost in our minds, and we are very keen to see that, as soon as restrictions are lifted, our community bands will again have a purpose.

In line with the above, we have made the following list of changes:

  • We have recognised that this crisis has meant a financial hit for our member bands, and in particular, our community bands. With no income from performances and possibly a reduced membership income, we are aware bands may be looking at financial hardship and, as such, we have made some changes which we hope will assist. The Association has extended the minimum registration fee of $125 to all bands for the 2020 calendar year, regardless of the number of members you register. Registrations are all due now, so please go to your registration page in your band log-in and complete your registrations as per usual. However, once submitted, your band will only be invoiced the one fee of $125. Usual fees will resume in 2021. For bands who have already registered and paid more than $125, a refund will be paid to you for the difference
  • The AGM which was set for the 17th May 2020 has been rescheduled for the Sunday the 13th September 2020 and will commence before the already scheduled General Meeting.
  • The Intermediate Level Conductors Workshop which was scheduled for the 30th and 31st May has been postponed to a later date once we have more clarity around the lifting of the current regime of restrictions.
  • OneMusic Australia Licences (formerly APRA/AMCOS) – The current licences are all due for renewal, however, following our discussions with OneMusic, no renewals need to be made until restrictions are lifted with the fee charged at that time being the appropriate pro-rata fee. Effectively this means that the need to renew all licence has been delayed until restrictions are lifted and Bands are back in operation.
  • Public Liability Insurance Scheme – The fees for the Public Liability Insurance are all due in full, however, there has been an extension to the insurance policies granted with an additional 3 months added which means that your next renewal will be the 1st June 2021. Bands effectively receive an additional 3 months coverage in the Insurance policy for 2020-2021.
  • Information and changes have been made to the Community Band Development Grants Program for 2020, however, these will be announced separately and communicated with the advice of success letters soon.
  • The State Band Championships have been deferred to the end of November (Subject to the removal of restrictions insufficient time for bands to make it viable to compete). Depending on the timing of the lifting of restrictions, the current format for the Band Championships may need to be varied, however, at this stage, we are hoping that we will be able to run this event in the usual format.
  • The State Solos will continue to be held. HOWEVER, we have approved several significant changes to make this event work. For 2020, the NSW State Solo and Party Championships will be held as an online event and will be restricted to individual events only (ie no party events – Duets, Trios, Quartets, Ensembles). The website will be updated over the next two weeks as details are finalised but below is a brief list of what we are looking to do to make it happen.

NSW State Solos event details:

  • Entries will now close on the 31st May 2020. Competitors are asked to submit a video recording of themselves performing their solo work. All videos are to be unaccompanied.
  • All events will be held as scheduled except for the Party events (events).
  • All events for 2020 will be Own Choice music. The Test music set for 2020 will be carried forward as the Test music for the 2021 NSW State Solo and Party Championships. Own Choice works can be any work except for the music which appears on the 2020 (now 2021) Test Music List.
  • The entry fees for 2020 will be reduced to $15 per entry with payment to be made at the time of entry.
  • Videos must be uploaded via a link to our YouTube channel which will be provided shortly between the period of 1 June and 14 June (details on how to complete this will be updated on the website).
  • All performances submitted must have been made in “one take” with no editing.
  • Competitors must be wearing their band uniform in the videos.
  • A winner will be determined for each event but points will not be awarded. Adjudications will still be provided to all competitors.
  • It is intended to still invite all Open Championship winners to compete in the Champion of Champions event at the State Band Championships if feasible.
  • With all other Champion of Champions events, the winning videos will be separately adjudicated after the winners have been announced and a Champion of Champions chosen from these winning entries.
  • All Championship and winning videos may be loaded on to our Facebook page following the event provided permission to do so is granted.

What happens now?

We do ask that all community bands advise the Association of the expected loss to income from the current restrictions. This includes loss of membership income, loss of income from planned concerts and band jobs, as well as any costs which need to be covered during this ongoing crisis. If you can please provide this by the 19th of April. This information is needed as we will be using this as the basis of further discussions with CreateNSW about the possibility of obtaining emergency funding to assist our bands to continue through this period. We do not want to see any of our bands experience any further additional hardship to what we are currently experiencing.

In the same way, we ask you to please communicate to all your members who work in the arts field either as music teachers, band program managers, freelance musicians, etc… to please go to and complete the information being collected. This information is most important as it is intended to be used as the basis for an expected support package for our self-employed members.

CreateNSW have also advised that the following grants program may be suitable for some or many of our members as well, so please forward this on to your membership for their information:

Through this difficult period where so many of us are being isolated from our families, it’s most important to keep tabs on each other. Call our members and friends and family, video chat regularly, and keep track of where each other is at.

So many of us will be doing it tough and if you are feeling overwhelmed or lost, please contact –

Lifeline at or call on 13114
Beyond Blue at or call on 1300 22 4636
Support Act at or call on 1800 959 500

If you are particularly worried about a friend, relative or band member or you fear for their safety, please call the Emergency Services on 000.

It’s times like these that we all need to pull together as a Banding Community, so please look after yourselves and each other. Stay safe, stay sane, and, practice.

We look forward to seeing you all later in the year.

Thank you for your continued support,

Jeff Markham
President BANSW

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