Saturday, 14 March 2015

Singing beside the seaside - Airey's Inlet Music Festival

Because of interstate travel this week, I missed my vocal group's rehearsal. It was our last in preparation for two performances at the Airey's Inlet Open Mic Music Festival, taking place this weekend.

I'd been diligently recording all our rehearsals so that I could listen and go over my parts in my own time. I don't usually do this, because I have a piano and just rehearse that way, but I'm not usually booked into the hotel suite that comes equipped with a piano, so did it this way instead.

On the four hour flights to and from Perth I spent the time listening and rehearsing. I thought I was doing it in my head, until the man sitting next to me said nothing, but conveyed, with a look that said, "What the hell are you doing? Please stop bouncing around in your seat!" (This man also failed to respond to the humour being offered with the coffee by one of the flight attendants.)

Vocal Group rehearsal - the devices come out.
© 2015 divacultura
A beautiful day dawned. I stood out in the sunshine waiting for my lift to arrive with my music, doing some last minute reviews. As we snuck around the back of a cafe, right on the highway, to warm up, the passing traffic gave us some strange looks. A lone cyclist looked as though he was about to ride right off the road.

One of the songs we sang is "Waiting on an Angel" by Ben Harper. When rehearsing and thinking about this song I attached it to Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, the two Australian men awaiting execution in Indonesia. It was all I could do to get through without tears taking over.

If you can get to Airey's Inlet tomorrow, it's worth visiting. There are nine music venues, ranging from marquees in car parks to corners of cafes and gallery spaces. The festival culminates in a performance by a "mystery guest" whose identity is a closely guarded secret.

I was so pleased to be a part of Mood Swing's performance today. Our happy, relaxed vibe created a beautiful exchange with the audience. Singing with and for other people is such a special gift.

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