Bandemonium 2008

“Bandemonium” a success. - June 2008

The June long weekend’s Bandemonium Festival has been deemed a success by participants and organisers. The Port Lincoln City Band joined with school students and members of the public hostel for workshops led by the highly acclaimed Dr Kevin Cameron. The festival culminated with a combined concert at the Nautilus Theatre showcasing the skills and technique learned in the workshops.

With Assistance of the Country Arts SA, the SA Band Association and Woolworths Port Lincoln, the Port Lincoln City Band was able to achieve a successful Bandemonium Festival, the first of its kind in Port Lincoln.

Dr Kevin Cameron, conductor of the SA Police Band and President of the SA Band Association, worked with music students from St Joseph’s School on Thursday the 5th of June, sharing his wealth of knowledge with the students. All had a great time and improved their music playing.
Dr Cameron then met with local School Music teachers to discuss music in the schools and in the community and to hopefully build some bridges, bringing the schools and the community band together for the benefit of the students and music in general.
Friday started at the Pt Lincoln High School, working with High School musicians and then with the Pt Lincoln Primary School musicians.  Again, the students lifted their music performances after working with Dr Cameron and all of the students enjoyed their time.
The PL City Band Deputy Music Director, Ian Isaac and President Gordon Hartley, joined Dr Cameron on his visits to the schools. Ian Isaac joined the students in music by playing his instrument, the Euphonium, and reaped some benefits from the workshops as well as joining in on the fun.

Friday night was a time to meet with the committee of the PLCB to discuss our future in Port Lincoln Music and Dr Cameron, as president of the SA Band Association, gave some great advice on how to run a happy and effective committee.

Dr Cameron has a Doctorate in music and philosophy, and a graduate diploma in education. His years of study and wealth of experience working with children and musicians of all ages, was demonstrated during the entire weekend. Every participant from 8 years old to79 years old, from beginner to advanced, learned something and enjoyed their time.

Saturday of the Bandemonium joined together school musicians (including one student from Poonindie School), the PLCB and other musicians. All participants gathered at the Lion’s Hostel, north Shields for a day they will always remember. Fun, learning, improvement in technique, new friendships, and lasting memories are some of the results from that one day. Sonia Radford, Founder of the Coast & Vines Music club, Woodend & McLaren Vale, also participated in the weekend’s events and was a great assistance to the percussion group especially. Nick Vladcoff, music teacher from the Pt Lincoln Primary School, was also a great support for the school students at the workshops.
Following the workshops gave time for dinner and a Quiz night that was a lot of fun and provided time for getting to know each other, sharing some food and laughing with each other at the hilarious Ruth Buxton, quiz master extraordinaire.

Sunday allowed for a sleep in before rehearsal for the concert at the Nautilus. A great rehearsal then turned into a wonderful concert to the public. The music performed was enjoyed tremendously by the audience, some were moved to tears! The concert was well received especially due to the school students participation and the amazing ability to play together so well after only one day together. A mouth-watering afternoon tea was supplied for the public post concert, providing the audience opportunity to mingle with Bandemonium participants and Dr Cameron.

Sunday night was the time to relax and enjoy each other’s company and some “wild music” back at the Lion’s Hostel for an “after party” with participants, sponsors and the large number of helpers for the weekend. Dr Kevin Cameron joined in on the jam session, playing the Tuba – his favourite instrument – and also had a lot of fun.

Monday gave time for private lessons with Dr Cameron, with also great results and hints and tips received.

“The Feedback received from participants has been all positive and every participant looks forward to participating in another Bandemonium in a year or two”, says Valerie Staunton, Event Organiser. “The PL City Band will defiantly host another festival again and we will aim to get more school students involved in addition to other Community Bands next time”

Having Dr Cameron available for this event has been an exceptional opportunity for all musicians on the Eyre Peninsula. All participants agree Dr Cameron was professional and fun and was invaluable to raising the quality of music in Port Lincoln Together with Dr Cameron, the festival would not have been a success without the numerous volunteers that helped out behind the scenes. “We would especially like to thank Nick Vladcoff and Sonia Radford, for their support with the school students during the festival”

“The entire event has brought the community together in unprecedented ways and has been a real success on so many levels” Miss Staunton said. “Everyone was happy with the event and had lots of fun, everyone left with a smile”.

The next step for the PLCB is to recruit a new Music Director. The band will then continue with working with other organisations to promote music on the Eyre Peninsula and further abroad.

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