About Us

The Live Music Office staff are Director John Wardle and Industry Liaison Consultant Damian Cunningham, who provide support to the music industry and government to develop the live music industry in Australia.

John Wardle has a background in live music policy across the three tiers of government and is a working musician and music teacher.

John has played a strategic role in liquor law reforms across a number of states, as well as to NSW Place of Public Entertainment (PoPE) regulation and National Construction Code variations in NSW and SA. In 2012, John was appointed Chair of the City of Sydney’s Live Music and Performance Taskforce before the establishment of the Live Music Office in July 2013.

As Live Music Office Director, John coordinates Live Music Office operation and activities, working closely with the music industry and state and local governments across Australia to develop coordinated centre of government live music policy and strategy.


DamienProfile headshotDamian Cunningham

Damian’s background is across all aspects of the live music and touring industry with over twelve years’ experience in the Australian music industry. He has a strong focus on the business aspects of the live performance industry with broad knowledge in booking venues & music festivals, touring domestic and international artists, ticketing, marketing and promotion, e-commerce and new technologies.

As Industry Liaison Consultant for the Live Music Office, he works across the live industry and government developing and delivering strategies and projects to enhance opportunities for artists, businesses and audiences across all areas of Australia

Damian has worked as a booking agent and in logistics for festivals including the Big Day Out, Splendour in the Grass, Peats Ridge, Surry Hills Festival and the Newtown Festival. He also runs his own live music services company Elastic Entertainment. Over the years, he has handled tour support for Lorde, A Tribe Called Red, Jon Cleary and The Good Lovelies.

“It’s my aim to bring a broad and practical approach to working in all areas of live music performance with a strong interest in venue, festival and use of alternative space for performance,” says Damian. As an electronic music producer performing under the name iSOMA, Damian has a strong interest in indie, roots, world, indigenous and electronic music.


Lucy J PhotoLucy Joseph

Lucy’s background is in administration and creative events, having worked as the Event Coordinator at Vivid Sydney, as well as the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, BEAMS Arts Festival and a variety of creative events agencies.

As the Program Manager for the Live and Local Strategic Initiative, Lucy works closely with councils across Western Sydney and Regional NSW to deliver live music events that promote the principles of the Live and Local Event Model – encouraging beneficial relationships between council, community, artists and businesses through live music at a grassroots level.

Lucy believes that “the value of live music experiences extends beyond creating a connection between artist and audience. Live music has significant flow-on benefits for local businesses, jobs, the economy, tourism, youth engagement, mental health, place-making and urban planning, and community identity.” She is passionate about the use of live music as a catalyst for social cohesion and economic development, and challenges anyone not to dance to September by Earth Wind Fire.