Make Music Day, the worldwide music celebration held each June 21, is going virtual this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizers announced this year. Typically featuring thousands of free outdoor concerts, performances, music lessons, jam sessions and other musical events on streets, sidewalks, parks and other public spaces across the globe, this year’s celebration will take a virtual approach to encourage all people, of all musical abilities, to celebrate the joy of making music. More than 1000 cities will take part in Make Music Day 2020, further demonstrating the power of music to unite and uplift people, spread joy and build community amid this challenging and unprecedented time.

Unlike traditional music festivals, Make Music Day celebrates and promotes the natural music maker in all of us, regardless of age, background or skill level. Make Music Day is an open invitation for everyone to make, enjoy, perform, teach and learn music on the longest day of the year and the launch of summer. Across the world, in cities large and small, musicians and organizers heeded the call and have created fun, engaging, new ways for anyone to join in the celebration on Sunday, June 21 while also practicing social distancing.

Launched in France in 1982 as the Fête de la Musique, Make Music Day has become a global phenomenon. Make Music Day is presented in Australia by the Australian Music Association in partnership with APRA AMCOS, and coordinated by the Live Music Office. The NAMM Foundation presents the global event and makes it all possible.

“After much pre-planning and the pandemic road block, the Association’s Rob Walker said Make Music Day will be more than ever a chance to stay connected through music. “Our Alliance agreed to go virtual, which presents heaps of opportunities for people to make music on June 21”

Australian Musician will participate in Make Music Day by broadcasting a virtual Melbourne Guitar Show, featuring at home performances from some of your Melbourne Guitar Show favourites

Roland Australia is celebrating Make Music Day with a series of live performances on the Roland Australia Facebook and Instagram pages. In light of the current climate, these performances will be from the artists’ homes and shared with the world on social media. Expect to see a range of musical styles from metal to electronic to pop to jazz with a wide range of musicians.

Canberra is getting into Make Music day spirit too. ACT’s peak music industry body, MusicACT is calling on musicians and singers to “play on their patio”, “do a banger on their balcony”, “sing on their sidewalk” or “rock out on their driveway” for just 20 minutes on June 21 for International Make Music Day. Just stand outside your home and perform on Sunday, June 21 from 2pm to 2.20pm to take part in the international event. Hundreds of musicians across the Canberra region are expected to participate in their neighbourhoods.

Tune in to Waverley Council’s (NSW) Facebook feed on Sunday 21 June, 2pm-3pm and watch as they celebrate Make Music Day by presenting to the current crop of Bondi WAVE bands. Captured on Soundtrap and broadcast live, you have a chance to vote for your favourite; live, Eurovision style. Dress up, dress down, organise a (virtual) listening party (appropriately socially distanced of course) and support your friends (and our local talent) as we celebrate the important role music plays as the soundtrack to our lives.

To celebrate Make Music Australia Day, Kingston Arts (Victoria) is putting together a short video highlighting the fantastic buskers who spread music throughout the City of Kingston every day.  Featuring a short introduction and a song, get to know some of our colourful characters so the next time you see them belting out a tune in public, you can say hi!  Keep an eye out on Kingston Arts Facebook page on the 21st of June to meet the legends who live Make Music Australia day, everyday.

Other highlights of Make Music Day 2020 in Australia will include:

 Global Livestream – As a “Main Stage” for Make Music Day, the Make Music Alliance will organize an all-day video stream on June 21 showcasing the rich diversity of being made around the world.

 Bash the Trash – Bash the Trash Environmental Arts offers unique designs for wind, percussion and string instruments that people can build from everyday refuse. Participants are invited to create instruments, and then use them to play Beethoven’s “Ode To Joy” and “Baby Shark” on Make Music Day. On June 21, Bash The Trash experts will lead a video call where everyone can share their creations.

 Live From Home – People will be invited to post a musical performance from home on June 21, and tag three friends to challenge them to do the same. The initiative is in partnership with Make Music Australia and Make Music China, the latter using Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok. Live From Home will feature an Ella Fitzgerald song challenge, in cooperation with the Ella Fitzgerald Foundation.

 World’s Smallest Marching Band – Since 2011, “Sousapaloozas” bringing hundreds of brass, wind, and percussion players together to sight-read John Philip Sousa marches have been a Make Music Day favorite. This year, in lieu of those large gatherings, brass and wind players will explore the other end of the scale by parading solo through cities and playing band repertoire to people listening from their homes or workplace.

All Make Music Day events are free and open to the public. Participants who wish to perform, or to host musical events, may register at

Official hashtags: #MakeMusicDay #MakeMusicOz

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  • Dom DiSisto
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