Star power: Daryl Somers will not just host Ballarat’s Carols by Candlelight, he’s also going to sing and lend a hand with the production side of the event. Photos: SUPPLIED

Somers time to shine at Carols

October 31, 2019 BY

HE’S been part of many of our lives for nearly fifty years and now TV legend Daryl Somers will connect with us again as host of this year’s Ballarat Carols by Candlelight presented by Harcourts.

The three-time Gold Logie winner and front man for shows like Hey, Hey it’s Saturday and Dancing with the Stars said he was excited about many different elements of the event, including working with some of the city’s most talented people.

“There’s a number of Ballarat performers who’ve gone onto to do musical theater and the like, all really top pros now and so it’s great they are going to be available to come back and celebrate,” he said.

“I just think we can make it as entertaining as possible.”

Of course, Somers is no stranger to Carols by Candlelight events, having hosted and sung at the Melbourne show at the Myer Music Bowl for years.

Yet one of the key reasons for keeping the tradition alive in Ballarat is at the heart of Somers’ participation.

“4500 families rely on the 3BA Christmas Appeal,” he said. “But it’s not just that, the general community deserves support, and the Carols bring everyone together. There’s no more important time of year than Christmas for families and communities. Especially if those families are doing it tough.”

Somers won’t just be hosting the Carols, he’ll also perform and is chipping in with production help.

“I’m looking forward to throwing myself into it and making it as entertaining as we possibly can, with maybe a few surprises thrown in,” he said.

“We’ll certainly keep the prestige and the reverence of the occasion as people love to sing their carols and hymns and all that stuff.

“I like to keep it light where you can and keep it fun.”

With a 45-year history of coming to Ballarat for TV specials Hey, Hey it’s the Holidays and shows and events with BTV-6 like Star Quest, the Showbiz series and a telethon, Somers has fond memories of the city.

“I was asked to come and host a talent program like the one I had come through myself, New Faces,” he said. “It became a regular trip up to Ballarat for a few years.

“La Scala Restaurant was a favorite. We would finish the show and go there for supper, it was always wonderful.”

Somers’ connection to the city was a big part of the reason Ballarat Carols by Candlelight organising committee head, Matt Hustwaite was keen to get the star on board.

“The idea came about after seeing some old BTV-6 footage of the 1988 Ballarat Telethon that Daryl hosted,” he said.

“We really wanted a big-name MC to add credibility to the event, but I honestly didn’t expect to actually get Daryl. Once we pitched him on the background of our group saving the Carols and the community nature of the event, he was very keen to donate his time and collaborate with us.”

As for what Somers’ involvement means, Mr Hustwaite was excited with the addition of true star power and what that would mean for other elements of the Carols.

“Having someone of Daryl’s calibre really helps take the whole event to the next level,” he said. “The additions of elements like Daryl, our returning performers like Zoy Frangos and the fireworks finale means that Carols will make for a spectacular and memorable Christmas for Ballarat.”