Fire Fight Australia raised close to A$10 million ($6.7 million) for good causes and exceeded all expectations, say organizers of the historic concert Sunday (Feb. 16) in Sydney’s west.
Spanning nine-and-a-half hours, the all-star event was also a rating hit, drawing more than 1.5 million viewers across its domestic broadcast partners, the Seven Network and Foxtel.
Produced by TEG Dainty and TEG Live, the one-off music fest was announced earlier in the year as a response to the devastating wildfires which swept the country, taking at least 33 lives and destroying more than a billion animals.
The final line-up at ANZ Stadium featured 23 acts, from local lads 5 Seconds of Summer to internationals Queen + Adam Lambert, Alice Cooper and K.D. Lang, veteran singers Olivia Newton-John and John Farnham, local hip-hop stars Hilltop Hoods, and a guest appearance from Oscar-winner and sometime rocker Russell Crowe.
By late Sunday, more than that A$9.5 million was raised. “Donations are coming in every hour,” explains Geoff Jones, CEO of TEG, parent of TEG Dainty and TEG Live. The final amount raised will “definitely be over A$10 million.”
Speaking to Billboard on Monday, Jones paid thanks to the 1,500 suppliers and volunteers, staff, crew and, of course, performers on the day. “It exceeded expectations,” he recounts. “It was a really happy day, the artists were all in a great mood, they all put the best version of themselves forward. Doing 22 different changes is a significant bit of work.”
In the days and weeks ahead, a package of the concert will be beamed via international carriers. “We’re working on the mechanics on that,” says Jones.
Those international broadcasts are expected to run until mid-May, explains Paul Dainty, president of TEG Dainty. Organizers “intend to keep accepting donations until then, it will take some time to provide final totals,” the veteran concert promoter explains. “We have engaged Deloitte to review our accounting and provide a post event report detailing revenues, expenses and confirmation of the final donations to the various charities.”
All donations made through firefightaustralia.com will go directly to the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s FIRE FIGHT FUND to ensure local community groups can access support throughout their recovery journey, at the appropriate time. For more information visit https://www.frrr.org.au.
All donations collected at ANZ Stadium during the event will go to the RSPCA Bushfire Appeal.