Music New South Wales held a DIY party-planning workshop in Wollongong today to educate people on how to host a successful event and negotiate legal frameworks.

The workshop was presented in partnership with the City of Wollongong and the Creative Dialogues Program, as part of the ‘Sound Advice’ series of workshops and talks being run by Music New South Wales this year.

Kat Dopper, a senior event producer based in Sydney, was one of three speakers at the workshop, alongside Jimmy Sherley, who runs the local music and arts event ‘Strawberry Boogie’, and a council representative.

Dopper, who runs the regular ‘Heaps Gay’ parties in Sydney, said that Safe Space events are one of the most important things for supporting young people, and particularly those in the LGBTIQ community.

“They allow people to come in a meet likeminded people, and just explore the scene and their sexuality and who they are.”

She said that for people looking to start organising parties, and particularly those looking to pursue it as a career, the most important thing is to work and build good relationships with stakeholders such as the police and venue managers.

“One hundred percent you have to deal with police and regulations and you have to consider all those things before you step into it,” she said.

“We’re lucky that police are there to keep people safe but you do have to work really closely with them and build a relationship to ensure that everybody is okay.”

Noise complaints are the most common reason Police in New South Wales are called out to parties or events, and can result in fines for the hosts and the event being shut down.

According to Sergeant Jacqui Davidson of the Wollongong Police, the ‘Protection of The Environment Operations Act 1997’ gives police the power to ask people to reduce a party’s noise.

“It’s just got to be deemed offensive, and that’s really subjective so what you think is offensive may be very different to me but that’s where our power comes from”.

Guidelines for how to safely plan a party can be found on the Safe Party Tips page on the NSW Police website.

Music NSW will be holding another ‘Sound Advice’ information session about the music industry this evening at Wollongong Art Gallery.


Image via Essence