It’s certainly a tough time to be setting up a new Australian music festival in the current competitive climate. For every successful launch, such as AJ Maddah’s Harvest festival or Mark ‘Diesel’ Lizotte’s Tasmanian Breath Of Life, there’s many more that fail to blossom – with the quiet cancellation of the ambitious One Great Night On Earth being the latest, most obvious example. 

But according to Christie Eliezer’s Industrial Strength column, local community organisers in Warrnambool are looking at conceiving a new music festival for the seaside community as early as October next year with advice from the one-time organisers of the Tamworth Country Music Festival

Former resident of ‘The ‘Bool’ and current the local member for Tamworth, Kevin Anderson, has been holding meetings and discussions with those looking to get the festival off the ground, with organisers hoping his experience will help in regards to developing a plan that, much like the Tamworth Country Music festival, will integrate local shops, businesses, arts, and culture to put together a new music festival, the first in Warrnambool since the not-so-successful Summer Daze in February 2006.

The Tamworth committee invited Mr Anderson to convene a series of seminars, and according to the The Standard, will take part in three sessions aimed at engaging locals to get behind the launch of a new music event. Using the expertise from his days as Director of Centreboard Media, the public relations and marketing consultancy team that put together the annual Tamworth Country Music Festival.

Planning team co-ordinator Russ Goodear told the paper that he hoped Mr Anderson’s involvement and insight would prove valuable to creating a sustainable and marketable event. “The world-renowned Tamworth Country Music Festival is a fringe festival that engages the city’s businesses and resources,” said Mr Goodear. “Including, shops, shopping arcades, tourist attractions, hotels, motels, cafes, wine bars, restaurants, clubs, halls, theatres, galleries and churches.”

“The Warrnambool Music Festival planning team is keen to create a fringe festival based on a similar model,” he added.

While the first of the development sessions would be between committee members, local members of the City Council, and representatives from Shipwreck Coast Marketing; the third and final session will be open to the public, encouraging participation from local businesses.

While no specific musical style and dates have been confirmed – let alone lineup – City Council is hoping that the new music event will reinvigorate the local business and culture, which aside from the annual Wunta Fiesta, doesn’t have a dedicated music event to call its own.

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