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Street festival feast for the ears and eyes

The inaugural Colour New England Street Arts Festival on Saturday 6 April will be a feast for the ears as well as the eyes.

Live music will feature in Armidale’s Beardy Street Mall throughout the festival, providing a tuneful backdrop as audiences are entertained by an array of international visual artists.

Traditional New Orleans-style jazz outfit Dixieland Jazz Group will kick off entertainment on the mall stage at 2.40pm.

Band member and New England Conservatorium of Music (NECOM) Chief Executive Officer Russ Bauer says Dixieland music is accessible to everyone.

“You don’t have to be a serious jazz-lover to appreciate the joy of Dixieland music,” Russ said.

Popular youth band Earth Device will follow at 4pm with their psychedelic funk rock, which has already developed a strong following.

NECOM’s Percussion Ensemble Program took off with a bang last year and was so successful it now has two groups. The senior group will present a lively set at 5.20pm.

Bellydance Earth and Sky Troupe will follow with a performance to delight the senses. The troupe’s beautiful, creative and skilful choreographed dances incorporate a modern twist on the ancient art of belly dance.

Light spectacular Illuminate Armidale will be switched on at 7pm, enhancing some of the city’s beautiful heritage buildings and trees in the central business district.

The wonderful black and white Charlie Chaplin movie City Lights will start at 7.30pm, wrapping up the mall stage entertainment. This heartfelt story of a lonely tramp and a blind flower girl will be accompanied by Russ playing a live piano soundtrack in the style of theatre music from a century ago.

Local venues will also provide a smorgasbord of live music that will suit everyone’s taste. Pete Stanley starts at 5.30pm at The Royal Hotel, with a DJ at 10pm. The New England Hotel hosts popular act jAm from 7pm. For some cool jazz, there’s the Carrie Bennett Trio playing at Charlie’s Last Stand.

Well known musician Greg Windred is playing at The Imperial and a DJ at the Wicklow will entertain patrons wanting to stay the distance.

“Don’t miss out on this creative extravaganza. Support your local creatives and performers and get down to the mall for the inaugural Colour New England Street Arts Festival,” Armidale Regional Council Mayor Simon Murray said.

The festival officially starts at 2pm. A full program of activities and events is available at armidaleregional.nsw.gov.au.


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