Surround Sounds rocks the region

May 22, 2022 BY

The Paul Kelly concert at Costa Hall. Photo: MIKE DUGDALE


THE inaugural Surround Sounds Geelong and the Bellarine Music Festival ended on a high on Sunday night with much-loved multi-award-winning Australian country music artist Kasey Chambers rocking Costa Hall with support artist Busby Marou.

Across the jam-packed month of action between April 7 and May 8, a total of 840 musicians performed across 90 events, in 35 different venues, to over 14,000 people in our region.

Highlights across the month-long celebration of Geelong’s live music and cultural heritage included two nights of OK Motel’s latest music tourism event West Town Music Club at the Geelong West Town Hall; Billabong Songs, a celebration of First Nations music, culture and yarns in Johnstone Park; Ngubitj, Samgooan, Water – Songs, Stories and Connection Projection at City Hall; Geelong Jazz Day; Ocean Grove Acoustic Festival; and Music in Exile at the newly refurbished Palais Theatre Geelong.

Norm Stanley sharing his personal insights and stories and about learning Didjeridoo at Narana Aboriginal Cultural Centre. Photo: MIKE DUGDALE

Australian Music Vault’s Geelong Music Bus Tours was another showstopper with legendary Geelong music icons Mick Thomas, Adalita and Maree Robertson taking lucky guests on a nostalgic journey throughout the City of Greater Geelong, showcasing the rich music heritage that is embedded within Geelong’s cultural DNA.

From Captain Bar to Costa Hall, from Norlane Community Centre to the Potato Shed, the region was charmed with classical, rock, punk, hip-hop, folk and everything in between.

The festival also featured responses to music through visual art which provided guests with accessible, diverse and broad ways of expression.

The month-long celebration included Draw the Music at Creative Geelong; the opportunity to write Geelong’s music history in a one-off Wikipedia Edit-a-thon writing session at Geelong Library and Heritage Centre, and to hear first-hand from musicians Lloyd Spiegel and Ali Barter how they have each carved out thriving career paths in the music industry.

Cr Eddy Kontelj, chair of the Arts, Live Entertainment and Hospitality portfolio was chuffed with how the festival panned out and highlighted the region’s bid to continue to become a hub of entertainment going forward.

“With the broad offerings and the activations of Surround Sounds that occurred throughout the City of Greater Geelong, we are one step closer to becoming the live entertainment hub of regional Australia,” Cr Kontelj said.

Giving residents and visitors to our region over 90 events to choose from over the last month has helped to reinvigorate the live music scene and local businesses alike.”

Surround Sounds Geelong and the Bellarine Music Festival was proudly presented by City of Greater Geelong and the Victorian government through Creative Victoria.