2015-2016 Festival is Over!
This year’s festival was a great success. The opening to the Festival was on New Years Eve with parties held in all the local hotels. The town was filled with music, fun and lots of activities. There was a great atmosphere and we received a lot of positive feedback from both performers and visitors. Before we finalize last year’s Festival and move towards the next Gulgong Folk Festival we would like to give special thanks to following groups and people.
The 2016-2017 Gulgong Folk festival will be at the same time this year. We look forward to seeing you all again!
We would like to say ‘thank you’ to the local hotels, motels and businesses such as the Centennial , the Commercial, the Prince of Wales, the Post Office Hotel, the Gulgong Motel, the $10 Town Motel, the RSL, the Butcher Shop Café and the Red Hill Environment and Education Centre for their donations and efforts before and during the Festival and offering free accommodations and meals to our musicians.
Thanks to all the beautiful and wonderful local and visiting musicians and the MC ‘s, Nick Clarey and the Free Fried chicken boys at the Post Office, Ray Laughlin and Tom Bromley at the Centennial, Liesel Meers, Marie Hensley and Di Clifford at the Prince of Wales Hotel and Marcus Mc Lennan at the Commercial Hotel. You all did a terrific job. Your songs and the sound of all your instruments filled the town with a vibe that was magical .
Our MC Des Kelly was absolutely wonderful in pulling up the Poet’s Breakfast at the RSL. He brought along Garry Lowe and other local authors and poets on Saturday morning and made the early morning start a worthwhile experience. People loved it and would like to see it happening next year again. Well done Des!
The Bush dance workshop and dance later in the evening performed by Dave Johnson who brought the joys of lively bush dancing to the RSL Club in Gulgong with ‘Gold Rush’ was welcomed by many keen dancers. Gold Rush is a talented group of musicians from Bathurst, the Blue Mountains, the Central Coast and Sydney led by bush fiddler David Johnson from the Southern Highlands. Dave is passionate about the wealth of great bush dance tunes that have been found in the area. Thanks to all of you for being part of our Festival.
Midsummer Night Magic Show
The Midsummer Night Magic Show which that was a collaboration between Sam Paine and Agnes Nordmann was received well. Thanks to both of them. The show drew on the varied talents found in the local community and began with Bill Allan an aboriginal elder who did the welcome to country and also played the didgeridoo followed by dancing performances from Georgie Fabien and Grace Hensley and story telling. A heartfelt thanks goes to all the lovely children from the $10 circus from the Gulgong Public School who put on a fantastic show , the Gudgegong Youth Theatre for presenting a comic romp with pirates, fairies, transformation and magic spells and the ‘lovely green witch’ Pamela Matheson for serving sweet treats afterwards.
MADS Steinway Piano
Thanks to Maurice Gaudry for getting the Grand piano onto the Prince of Wales Opera House stage and to the performances of Matt and Luke Gaudry on the Steinway Piano, it sounded great. The Steinway piano trust was set up to purchase the Steinway Piano now housed in the Prince of Wales Opera House Gulgong. The Steinway was purchased from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation in 1980 for the sum of $ 14,000.00. It was paid for by generous donations through the Trust with the final payment made on January 15th 1981. The Steinway was manufactured by Steinway and Sons of Hamburg in 1962 . Gulgong MADS is especially grateful for the original members of the Trust and the Gulgong Community for their foresight in purchasing this rare and valuable instrument. Over the coming year we will raise funds towards the maintaining of the Steinway piano. Keep an eye out for updates during the year!
Gulgong Arts Council
Holtermann Museum was the place for catching up with local artists who showcased paintings done over the last 12 years from members of the Gulgong Arts Group. This exhibition runs from 30th December 2015 to the 15th January 2016 from 10 am to 4 pm and it did attract lots of visitors over the three days to the building. All work will be for sale.
Activities Volunteers & Markets
Big thanks to Jill Lawsen for volunteering her time to look after the information table at the Prince of Wales Opera House, the Gulgong Public School for the circus workshops and Belinda Davies for the face painting, Marian for managing the activity centre at the Old National Bank Building and offer marbling and making lovely dream catchers, Christine and Dawn for the sweet treats and Sam for the chalkboard Art and story telling, to all the lovely market stall holders who have been with us over the last years and all the new ones who came along and last but not least let’s not forget the lovely food stalls who provided delicious Chinese food and the mob from the Pilliga Pottery and Barkala Farm Stay who served their yummy, delicious homemade gelato and german sausages with sauerkraut.-
Raffles were drawn on the last day of the festival. The lucky winner of our first raffle was Joseph Leotta. He won one of Judith Kurtz well-loved paintings called ‘Rocky Waterhole Road’. Congratulations to Berni Aquilina for winning the accommodation weekend at Pilliga Pottery. I am sure that the team from the Pilliga Pottery and Barkala Farm Stay will make the weekend a memorable time, Ronda Westwood for winning a brilliant painting by Ross Kurtz and Sheila Doyle winning a R&R SUPA IGA Food voucher. Congratulations to Donna Thompson who won the hand painted Henry Lawson Guitar which we have been selling raffle tickets for during the year.
A belated thanks to the Gulgong B&B accommodation for presenting us with a money voucher of $100 for the best decorated shop window. The theme of the decoration had to be linked to the Gulgong Folk Festival. The competition was won by Bruce Mc Gregor Real Estate, Mayne Street. Well done Bruce!
The lucky winner of the guitar competition was Josh Maynard from Cowra. He was the last of 17 competitors to take to the Prince of Wales stage. His performance impressed the crowd and the judges Glenn Skarratt, James Church and Luke Gaudry and they awarded him with a guitar made by well-known luthier Gerard Gilet who spent more than 100 hours crafting the prize guitar.
The Talent Quest was judged by Luke Gaudry and the winner was Samantha Bourke and the runner-up was bassoonist Theodore Akerman. Well done guys!
Congratulations to Amber Hooper who won the Instagram Competition with her photo she took during the festival at the Prince of Wales Hotel. Thank you to the musicians Josh Maynard, Cheralyn Darcey and Euripi,the Plough and Hugh Merrell for the generous donation of one of their lovely CD’s.
Red Hill Environment & Education Centre
Lots of musicians and visitors also camped at the legendary Red Hill Environment and Education Centre and joined jam sessions after the pubs closed which lasted into the early morning hours. The Henry Lawson Caravan park was fully booked out. Great thanks to Tim for giving discount to the festival visitors and artists. The showground accommodated lots of people from the caravan club, everyone from the club was happy with their stay and would like to come back next year.
Our promotion over the last year has covered many areas and we like to acknowledge the fantastic job the Mudgee Guardian has done in advertising our event in our region and also thanks to the other local newspapers in Bathurst, Lithgow, Gilgandra, Coolah, Coonabarabran, Mudgee Region Tourism, Sales @ Professionals Mudgee, Central NSW Tourism, Orana Arts and Regional Arts NSW, the ABC and other local radio stations, Gulgong Gossip, Cornstalk magazine, the Trad & Now magazine, the Grey Nomads, the Australian Bush Poet’s Association and the Discovery magazine, the Sydney Morning Herald for the mentioning of the Gulgong Folk Festival in their out-of-town spectrum Planner and lots more. [Please forgive me if I forgot someone] All this wonderful promotion had people travelling to Gulgong from everywhere.
We were fortunate to get Kylie Young from BP Lowes Petroleum station for taking over the printing of the festival program. Thanks Kylie you did a great job!
A big round of applause to all the committee members for their effort in getting the show on the road and also to the whole town of Gulgong for showing their support and kindness to everyone who came along and added ‘somewhere’ and ‘somehow’ to the wonderful atmosphere of the festival and made this such a great success.