Anglesea’s status as a popular music destination has been strengthened by the Surf Coast Shire council’s $10,000 investment in The Sound Doctor Presents.
Awarded through the council’s Event Grants Program 2020-21, the volunteer group – founded by local general practitioner David Corbet – sources and secures homegrown and international talent to perform gigs at Anglesea Memorial Hall.
Mr Corbet, whose academic background is in music and medicine, said the grant was a credit to the Surf Coast community for supporting arts and culture.
“It’s a really nice acknowledgement that what we’re doing is valuable, and that music and art and live performing are really valuable aspects of culture and community that need supporting.
“One of the reasons we wanted to do it (The Sound Doctor Presents) was to create a space for people to meet.
“We have a bar at the back, they’re intimate shows with amazing artists and people get to meet them afterwards. The best part is Anglesea residents get to walk home afterwards.”
The Sound Doctor’s first performance was delivered by Irish singer songwriter Lisa Hannigan in 2017, and since then an increasing number of artists have included Anglesea on their tour roadmaps.
Last year saw audiences attend sold-out shows to Olympia, Ruby Gill and Didirri, Alice Skye and Emily Wurramara, Tiny Ruins (New Zealand) and Joan As Police Woman (USA), but this year’s line-up is off to a flyer, with Dyson Stringer Cloher and Seeker Lover Keeper both locked in for shows in March.
Mr Corbet said The Sound Doctor Presents’ reputation was becoming illustrious with each new performance.
“Last year was an amazing year, we had a couple of incredible international acts. We have a plan for this year, but we can’t announce that yet.
“We’re continuing to grow and getting recognised more around Australia and internationally. It’s incredible for a small community-based organisation to be having these options.
“The majority of our audiences are from the Surf Coast, but we do get people coming far and wide.
“I’m proud of the community for getting behind it. It takes a lot of hard work and the volunteers really make it happen.
“The fact that we sell our shows enables us to bring these artists down. We wouldn’t be able to do it if these people weren’t keen to do it.”
The grant will be used to fund the music program, including production, lighting, marketing and ticketing costs.
Mr Corbet offered his thanks to local businesses and council for supporting the group.
“We don’t make any money out of this, it’s all about putting money back into the organisation so the shows can go ahead.
“We want to keep this going long term, and this support helps us expand what we do and grow. We’re very grateful to have that support.”