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November 2018

Alexandra Buskers Festival [Mon, 5 November 2018]

The Central Otago District Arts Trust, Central Otago Musicians Inclusive, Liz Conway Music and Central Sounds joined together to bring to Alexandra the first Alexandra Buskers Festival in late October. The festival was held in conjunction with the annual Alexandra Thyme Festival. Arts Trust Coordinator Rebekah de Jong said the idea fitted nicely with the four major Thyme Festival themes, i.e. Arts, Craft, Wellbeing and Sustainability and the musical performances helped to liven up the streets of Alexandra.  

Young people and accomplished Central Otago musicians were invited to perform for the three day festival. Organisers identified designated sites on the main streets of Alexandra and interested performers were allocated these positions at various times throughout the day. Central Otago Mayor Tim Cadogan opened the festival with an accomplished act, singing and playing the guitar. Matt Feron awarded performers with spot prizes courtesy of Central Sounds throughout the duration of the event. Participants included stilt walkers, poets, a bagpipe player, local bands and solo musicians. For some, it was the first time they had performed in public and an opportunity to get comfortable in doing so. 

Co-organiser Denis Litchfield said he hoped the experience of performing in the festival would encourage more young people to busk on the streets of Alexandra over the summer months.

Organisers plan to revisit the Alexandra Buskers Festival on an annual basis.