Winter magic in the making

The festival drummers, a popular feature each year, are set to start work on this year's River Arts finale.
The festival drummers, a popular feature each year, are set to start work on this year's River Arts finale.

A change of date and location has organisers of the 2019 River Arts Festival inspired.

A suitcase forage, regional artists and turning Town Hall into a theatre to feature short films, it's all part of the vision for this year's "Ignite" themed winter festival on Saturday June 15.

The festival has relocated to the historic town square and will see Victoria Park and the heritage precinct beautifully lit on the winter's evening. 

And festival coordinator Rob Shannon says things have started to come together quickly since the change of date and location were announced.

One of the new aspects for this year's festival is the idea of the "suitcase forage".

"People can bring up to three suitcases and sell from the pavement," Mr Shannon explained. 

Town Hall will host an art exhibition while artisans can be based in the park itself.

Organisers are calling for anyone with a short film to get in touch, they also have the capacity to show films in Town Hall.

There will be three stages for performers: the rotunda, an acoustic 'lounge' and one that's been dubbed 'the soap box'.

The Roweths, who Forbes residents might know from the Forbes Heritage 2018 presentation night, will bring their blend of spoken and musical folklore to that space. 

Parkes-based Amity, Bathurst-based The Tenth Man, and the local seniors choir are among other artists secured for the event, to take place from 1pm to 8pm.

"All the acts are from around here," Mr Shannon said.

The much-anticipated finale will be quite different this year as Victoria Park is a very different venue to Frogs Hollow, but Mr Shannon says the precinct will be spectacularly lit.

He's already working with the regular performers festival drummers, Kristen's Dance Studio and Bedgerabong school to plan this year's finale - with the exciting addition of the River Spirit Dancers. 

Mr Shannon is also encouraging anyone who would like to be involved in any way, whether it's creatively or with the set-up or pack-up to get in touch. 

The committee of three - Mr Shannon, Ro Burns and Margot Jolly - organising the event welcomes all volunteers and contributors. 

If you have ideas or would like to be part of the festival, please contact Rob Shannon by emailing robdha@bigpond.com or phoning 0415 223 267.

Believe it or not, Bedgerabong students produce some pretty impressive music with these home-made instruments. If you missed them at the 2017 festival, make sure you catch them this year on June 15.

Believe it or not, Bedgerabong students produce some pretty impressive music with these home-made instruments. If you missed them at the 2017 festival, make sure you catch them this year on June 15.