$6.2 million to sustain leading arts organisations

Five leading arts organisations will share in more than $6.2 million from the Morrison Government’s $50 million COVID-19 Arts Sustainability Fund, to support ongoing viability following the impacts of the pandemic.

The Australian Ballet School and Circa Contemporary Circus, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Sydney Theatre Company and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra will receive grants.

Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cites and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the purpose of the Sustainability Fund is to provide support to systemically significant major arts companies, should they face a risk of not being able to sustain themselves to reach the end of the pandemic and return to normal operations.

“This funding will provide critical support for these major arts employers to help continue the recovery from the ongoing effects of COVID-19,” Minister Fletcher said.

“While these organisations vary in craft and discipline, they have all faced similar challenges throughout the pandemic that have limited their ability to hold live performances or deliver education and training in the performing arts,” Minister Fletcher said.

“With the Morrison Government’s support, these significant performing arts organisations will be well placed to re-emerge from the pandemic and return to normal operations with the necessary staff and skills.”

“The vaccine rollout is continuing at a strong pace, states and territories are opening up, and can expect the arts sector to rebound as performers get back on stage.”

Member of the Creative Economy Taskforce and Chief Executive Officer of the Australia Council for the Arts, Adrian Collette AM, said the Fund is helping to sustain the sector in preparation for reopening as restrictions ease, while retaining essential staff and skills.

“Throughout the most difficult moments of the pandemic, Australians have turned to arts and creativity for connection, enjoyment and wellbeing. This funding will help to support our arts organisations and our creative workforce to rebuild, reopen and reconnect with Australian audiences as it becomes safe to do so,” Mr Collette said.

More than $43 million has now been allocated under the COVID-19 Arts Sustainability Fund to support 16 leading arts organisations across the country. The Morrison Government is investing over $1 billion into the arts and creative sector in 2021-22.

Media contact:

Christine Byllaardt | 0409 433 357 | Christine.VandenByllaardt@communications.gov.au

Batch 8 and 9 recipients:



Melbourne Symphony Orchestra

$2 million

Australian Ballet School


Australian Brandenburg Orchestra


Sydney Theatre Company

$2.7 million

Circa Contemporary Circus