Award Season in 2020 looked a little different than usual, and our JMC Students are learning first-hand how their roles are changing and evolving within the entertainment industry!
The 16th Annual Music Victoria Awards was celebrated a little differently this year. Held as a live stream event on December 9th 2020 at the Melbourne Recital Centre, an award ceremony celebrating Victoria’s best acts, albums, songs and musicians of the year went off without a hitch thanks to a group of JMC Interns!
A team of Entertainment Business students over at our JMC Melbourne campus had the opportunity to work with Music Victoria for their awards evening over the past few months. Alyson MacIntosh-LaRocque, one of our hardworking EBM student interns, shares her experience and let's us in on how the future of award shows are looking in this post COVID environment.
Tell us about the overall experience of working at this year’s Music Victoria Awards?
I started my internship with Music Victoria during the Melbourne lockdown. Much of my time with the organisation involved remote work, and I didn’t meet everyone in person until a month before the awards.
As Victoria was reopening during my time there, I saw first-hand all the ways that Music Victoria advocates for the industry behind the scenes. The work they do has been instrumental in helping the Victorian music community navigate the “COVID normal” roadmap and restrictions. Overall, it was a fulfilling experience. I am very grateful to JMC Academy and Music Victoria for the opportunity.
What was your role during the event?
In the months leading up, I completed all kinds of tasks from collating information provided by nominees into spreadsheets to preparing and scheduling social media content to encourage public voting. Doing these tasks gave me insight into how much work really goes on behind the scenes in preparing for an event, regardless of whether patrons are attending.
On the day of the event, I helped the team prepare the backstage area before jumping onto social media for the duration of the awards. Prior to the awards proceedings, I used the @musicvictoria Instagram story to set the scene for those who could not attend in person. During the ceremony, I shared live updates of the winners using graphics I had prepared in advance. My classmate Tess sat in the audience with me and posted live updates to Twitter, while four other JMC vollies helped out backstage. It was extremely rewarding to sit in the auditorium for the awards, as I was able to experience the culmination of the team’s hard work!
How did you prepare for your role?
I was tasked with preparing the social media content myself, so I created two different images appropriate for Twitter and Instagram for each of the 23 awards recipients. I drafted the copy and ensured the images were in the correct order on my phone and in a drive for Tess. I also planned the story highlights I wanted to capture, and the copy for them in advance. Doing this preparation made things so much easier on the day!
What did participating in this volunteer experience/opportunity teach you about the industry and your job capabilities?
First and foremost, participating in this internship during COVID-19 has shown me just how resilient the music and live events industries are. The Music Victoria Awards was the first event with an audience to be held at the Melbourne Recital Centre since March 2020. Seeing the community reunite after so long for such a significant industry event was truly special. This experience also allowed me to connect with so many like-minded individuals, whose passion and perseverance during these times has further fuelled my fire to establish a career in this industry.
Are there any events in the future that you would be keen to get involved in?
I can’t wait for music festivals to come back, but this experience has opened my eyes to the realm of business and industry events. That being said, my dream event to work on would be an Elrow Party. Held all over the world, they must be experienced to be understood, with an emphasis on crazy costumes, tonnes of confetti and themed stages. I would love to go behind the scenes and see what goes into creating the magic at one of their events.
What has been the main takeaway from your time studying EBM at JMC so far and what advice would you give to anyone considering studying EBM?
The units I have completed thus far at JMC have opened my eyes to the far-reaching scope of the entertainment industry. When I started studying in March 2020, I had my sights firmly set on having my own music festival within the next five years. During the first lockdown, while completing Trimester 2 of online learning at home, the Copyright & Publishing unit piqued my interest in publishing and synch licensing. As I write this, thanks to my internship experience and the Digital Content Creation class, I am exploring avenues in social media and marketing.
JMC’s Entertainment Business Management course explores many facets of the industry, and the small class sizes mean the lecturers can tailor content to suit individual interests. I would encourage any prospective student to not only schedule a campus visit and chat to the staff, but also to get involved with any entertainment business related online content. Thanks to COVID-19, there are webinars and online masterclasses happening regularly, which offer insight into the many fields of the industry.
Do you think COVID has brought about more opportunities for change and advancement in EBM?
Absolutely! The Music Victoria Awards for 2020 were planned with a broadcast audience in mind, with more emphasis placed on the screen and on the socials than would have been the case with an in-person event. Lachlan Bradshaw, from the JMC Film department, did a phenomenal job of splicing together the nominee reels and winners acceptance videos that were used during the ceremony. These changes were well-received, and the standard has been raised for future years even when audiences do return.
Another positive I see with the shift to digital platforms and livestream formats for events is the advancement in accessibility and inclusivity. Those who might have been unable to attend an event are now able to participate in a way that has not been available before. As in-person events return, is will be exciting to see how these platforms are incorporated into the programming, whether through augmented or virtual reality, or simply live streams.
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