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Artist Expression of Interest Guidelines & Application

2020 Folk by the Sea Artists Application Guidelines & Expression of Interest to Perform Application


The sixth Folk by the Sea is to be held from 25-27 September 2020 and online applications are open.

Please read through this page before submitting an EOI. The form is at the end of the page.

This is a low key/casual folk festival, nothing like the intensity of the Illawarra Folk Festival if you have ever experienced it.

Fees are low to modest and cover expenses essentially so please do not go past this point if you have expectation of a large fee!

The festival is presented by volunteers the Illawarra Folk Club, a non-profit incorporated association. Many of these volunteers are performers themselves and are providing their effort to promote folk music.

Festival Format

  • The festival begins on Friday evening with a dance and concerts featuring at the Kiama Showground Pavilion.
  • The festival continues on Saturday at the Kiama Showground in 4 venues. The aim is to have around 15 to 20 acts for this day who will attract audiences to purchase tickets.
  • Sunday’s concert will be held at the Kiama Showground and Bowling Club and will mainly feature local acts.

Artists Selection Criteria

We will select acts mainly by the following criteria:

  • Participation - We are looking for folk music acts who will be part of the event and be involved not only in concerts but also sessions, singalongs, workshops, theme concerts, dances and children’s events where possible.
  • Artists Who Will Camp on Site - We will hope artists will camp on site. Some limited accommodation may be provided with billets.
  • Artists Who Are Happy to play in Acoustic Style - Please note that this is a traditional style folk festival with a wide aged audience and that many venues are close to each other so the sound systems provided are not large and powerful but are for clarity and reinforcement. Please consider this before applying if you are a loud band!
  • Performance Content - We are looking for artists to present a concert style performance of up to 1 hour. Artists who can also provide a workshop and/or a children’s performance will also be favourably considered.
  • Type of material performed - Folk style acts are preferred, with minor inclusion of other musical elements. We generally don't book acts who solely perform Blues, Jazz, Acoustic Pop or Country as we find there are more than enough 'folk style' acts around to fill our spots.
  • Type of performances - Acts with workshops and theme presentations are always more favoured rather than just concert acts. Also acts who can play for  children and folk dancing are also sought, although not essential. Acts who can stay the whole Festival and participate in sessions and the general festival atmosphere are also highly considered.
  • Price of course - Low to modest fees are provided dependent on the number of acts, performances proposed and where they are coming from. Very limited accommodation is available however there is plenty of camping space on the Festival site. You need to indicate in the notes section if the fee proposed is negotiable as well. We have provided some guidance as to what you might quote below. You are still welcome to provide the fee you like.
  • International Acts - We provide modest fees only and DO NOT PROVIDE AIRFARES or ARRANGE VISAS. Large groups should seek their own funding from their countries or other sources.
  • Street acts, buskers - are more than welcome to apply to perform but please be aware that the focus of the festival and the limited funds are provided towards the musical aspect.
  • Volunteering - We will welcome and look favourably upon acts who will also contribute by helping make the festival happen! We always need MCs, Venue Manager, Instrument Lockup staff and many other tasks. So please also consider strongly about volunteering.
  • Support for the Folk Music Scene in Australia – We also like to support acts that support their local and national folk music scene.

Fee Request Advice

All performance fees submitted are to include GST if applicable and all other costs including travel costs to get to and from the Festival site. The following will give artists some advice as to what is generally provided for remuneration for the whole festival, not per performance.

You are of course welcome to ask for what you want but this gives you an idea of what we are expecting and is acceptable within our budget. We provide free camping sites and in some instances may provide accommodation based upon circumstances. For this fee we expect the artists are available for the Saturday at least.

Festival Pass Issue

Friday and Saturday Passes will be provided for artists engaged for those days. Partners and children (U18) passes will be complimentary. Artists booked for Sunday performances will not receive Friday/Saturday Passes.


  • Single artist - $80
  • Duo - $120
  • Band (more than 2!) - $200 to $300 dependant on the number of members
  • Dance groups, choirs - up to $100 or Day Passes dependant on number of performances.


  • Single artist - $150
  • Duo - $200
  • Band - $300 to $700 dependant on the number of members


Artists who are not local or Sydney based might like to consider the base fees for local artists and then add the travelling costs to arrive at a figure but would suggest a maximum of $1000.


Fees are negotiable but in general the offered fee can range anywhere between $100 and $1000 and more dependant on the number of artists in the act, suitability and appeal to the festival. Have a look at the local and Sydney base fees as well. Airfares are not provided by the festival. Artists are responsible for arranging their own visas, transport to and from the festival.


  • A Day Pass will be provided to any Youth Artists selected.
  • A Day Pass will be also provided for one parent..
  • Prices for additional parent and siblings will be as per the general ticket rates.

Artists Responsibilities

  • Artists accept responsibility for their own Public Liability Insurance. When performing, you are a Festival service provider and as such, are not covered by the Festival's public liability insurance.
  • We suggest investigating insurance options with Folk Alliance Australia, see and follow the links to 'insurance'. You need to be or become a member of Folk Alliance Australia.
  • Artists also accept all responsibility for their Tax Obligations, Superannuation and WorkCover requirements.
  • Artists to provide their own equipment such as guitar amps and drum kits. The festival does not provide backline equipment.
  • Artists are responsible for their meals and drinks. Water will be provided at stages.


David De Santi, Russell Hannah, Graeme Morrison
2020 Folk by the Sea Booking Committee
Presented by the Illawarra Folk Club Inc.

Expression of Interest to Perform Application

Please CAREFULLY read each section below and provide your information in the boxes provided.

This is an expression of interest only and much more information may be required if you are selected or shortlisted.

Thanks for applying to perform at the 2020 Folk by the Sea festival.
We hope to advise artists around late May.
David, Graeme, Russell
Booking Committee
1. ACT NAME - Please provide the name of the Artist. This is the group's name or your name if you're a solo artist. Also provide which genre(s) best fit your style.
3. CONTACT NAME & PHONE NUMBER - Please provide contact name and mobile number for during the Festival.
PLEASE INCLUDE ALL TRAVEL COSTS and GST in the fees requested.
You can make multiple selections. If you select 'Other' please list availablity in box below.
7. ACCOMMODATION REQUEST - Please select your preference
8. ACCOMMODATION DETAILS - provide number of camp sites required or bedding arrangements for home host or other details.
9. BIOGRAPHY - Please provide a maximum 25 word biography for the inclusion in the Souvenir Program and promotional material.
* indicates a required field
Please fill this field.

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    Presented by the Illawarra Folk Club, a non-profit incorporated association. 

    The Club also presents the annual Illawarra Folk Festival held in January at Bulli.

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