RMIT music students partnered with Melbourne Music Week to present Breakout, a sustainable-minded music event celebrating locality.
As part of their Bachelor of Arts (Music Industry), third-year students were involved in all aspects of the event organisation, from collaborating with industry partners to determining logistics, sourcing artists and marketing the event.
The concert featured local artists Animaux, Leisure Suite, Crepes, CC:Disco!, Sedgwick, Young Spice and Alice Ivy, and aimed to raise awareness of sustainability and environmental consciousness in the music industry.
Powered by the Germinate solar sound system, the afternoon featured solar-brewed and locally produced beer, cider, and kombucha tea from The Good Brew Co., as well as tasty treats from Crêpes for Change, a social enterprise aiming to eliminate youth homelessness in Australia.
Students Charlotte Barker and James Doolan said that the event exceeded their expectations, despite encountering a few hiccups along the way.
“There were many moments leading up to the event where it looked like the whole thing might fall apart, but the biggest highlight was stopping to realise that we actually did it,” Doolan said.
“As a team, we managed to solve problems and work through the challenges,” Barker said.
“It was a wonderful moment to just stop and look at what we had achieved; everyone in the crowd had food or a drink in hand and seemed to be enjoying the music.”
The students also emphasised the benefits of participating in a real-world project during their studies.
“As students interested in the music industry, there’s no better way to learn than to get firsthand experience,” Doolan said.
“From occupational health and safety concerns, site layouts, risk management plans, organising waste, managing artists, working on sound tech, setting up stages, marketing the event, documenting the entire process or playing at the event, there was something that everyone could take away from the experience.”
Barker said that networking and making industry connections was a fantastic way to gain experience for her future career.
“Having this opportunity makes the big bad world of work seem a little less daunting to enter,” she said.
Euan Williamson, Director of Creative Environment Enterprises and industry partner of the Germinate solar-powered sound system project, said the event was a great success.
“The sound system was successfully re-launched at Breakout, now using a brand new 20kWh lithium battery bank,” he said.
“The event went smoothly and it’s great to have lithium cells running this type of inspiring application. Germinate is now running on cutting-edge technology.”
Bachelor of Arts (Music Industry) Program Manager, Ed Montano, said the project was a wonderful opportunity for students to exercise and advance their skills and knowledge, particularly within a team environment.
“In the capstone course, students were able to draw on the skills developed over their entire program of study to engage in a project they can use to prepare them for the workplace,” he said.
“The event involved various levels of organisation, documentation, promotion and delivery, so there were numerous areas for students to be involved, depending on their interests and expertise.
“The project resulted in a great day, with people of all ages and backgrounds – from young children to the elderly, workers in suits as well as students – attending and enjoying themselves.”
Montano also said he envisages the event becoming an annual occurrence, and is hoping to establish a long-term partnership with the City of Melbourne and Melbourne Music Week.
The Breakout event was made possible with funding from the RMIT Sustainability Seedlings Fund and Melbourne Music Week’s Self-Made event category presented by Levi’s.
Story: Emma Morgan