The ukulele has had a huge surge in popularity in Australia over the past decade. There are ‘ukestras’ (orchestras featuring the uke!) popping up everywhere, and popular music festivals celebrating the little Hawaiian instrument are held all over Australia. The biggest of these is in Cairns, Queensland, every July. It attracts players from around the world and is a big tourist draw. This year, Quirindi will have its own unique music festival for the very first time – the Who’d A Thought It Music Festival and North-West Ukulele Awards!
The Quirindi community has been keen for a festival for some time to drive tourism to the region, boost local business and showcase our beautiful town to visitors. The inaugural Music Festival will be held in Quirindi over the October long weekend (3rd-6th) and events will be spread across the town, taking full advantage of the very best of our pubs, cafes and venues. Events are already planned at the Royal Theatre, Quipolly Dam and the festival’s namesake – the Who’d A Thought It Lookout. Visitors will experience all different musical genres at this family friendly festival, and the ukulele will feature on the Sunday night with Ukulele Championships and Awards.
The festival is supported by the Quirindi Chamber of Commerce, and the Festival Committee Chair is Brian Clarke. Brian’s a new resident proud to call Quirindi home, and is certain that a music festival is the perfect way to promote Quirindi as well as offering a wonderful cultural event on the yearly calendar. Brian’s a member of the local Quirindi ‘ukestra’ and knows first hand the joy that learning an instrument and playing together brings to people of all ages.
The ukulele is such a fun instrument to learn! It’s relatively easy for beginners to pick up and is known as the ideal first instrument. If you can already play the guitar, it’s a cinch. The uke is really cheap, portable and its jaunty sound is irresistible. Not convinced? Check out this ridiculously fun video from The Sum Of The Parts Ukestras, based in the Lower Hunter region of New South Wales. Kids from Quirindi Public School have been exposed to the ukulele during Term 1 this year, with teachers from the Tamworth Conservatorium of Music travelling down to teach the uke, flute, violin, recorder and cello. Look out for uke lessons around the Quirindi area – you might just find you’ve got a hidden talent!
As plans come together for the Who’d A Thought It Music Festival, you can contact the Liverpool Plains Visitor Information Centre and keep an eye on the Quirindi Advocate and other local papers for more information.
Here at Ray White Rural Quirindi we’re thrilled about the potential of this brand new event and the positive effect it’s sure to have on our community. Quirindi’s got so much to offer! If you’d like to find out more about the region, or are looking to buy, rent or sell property in the Quirindi area, come and have a chat with our friendly team.