PLAYING FOR AUSTRALIA: Beaut ukes join celebrations

Members of the Birregurra Ukulele Collective, from left, Denis Fielding, Fiona Brandscheid, Graham Burrell, Jock MacFarlane, Susie Coulson, Anna Hoedeman, Catorina Holyoake, Clive Brooker, Julie Payne and Simon Oldfield are preparing to perform at Colac Otway Shire Council’s Australia Day celebrations at Birregurra tomorrow.

Birregurra Ukulele Collective members, from left, Denis Fielding, Fiona Brandscheid, Graham Burrell, Jock MacFarlane, Susie Coulson, Anna Hoedeman, Catorina Holyoake, Clive Brooker, Julie Payne and Simon Oldfield are preparing to perform at Australia Day celebrations at Birregurra tomorrow.

A BIRREGURRA-based music group is preparing for its biggest ever performance since forming in late 2014.

The Birregurra Ukulele Kollective will have a starring role at tomorrow’s Colac Otway Shire Council’s Australia Day celebrations in their home town.

Group organiser and singer Fiona Brandschied said the group will play Vance Joy’s song Fire And The Flood at the event.

The group will also join country star James Blundell to perform his song Way Out West.

“We wanted to play a good Australian song and given what has been going on lately it’s a pretty appropriate song,” she said.

Ms Brandschied said the performers were “absolutely thrilled” to be taking part in the event, which will also include children’s activities, market and food stalls, a car display, barefoot bowls, art activities, a photo exhibition and cultural dance performances.

Colac Otway Shire Council representatives will also present the shire’s Australia Day awards at the event.

Ms Brandschied said the Birregurra Ukulele Kollective had expanded to incorporate other musical instruments along with ukuleles.

“We started 15 months ago with three people, and now we have 17 people and a variety of ukuleles, banjo, mandolin, bass guitar, percussion, bass clarinet, trumpet, a fiddle player and harmonica,” she said.

“We just wanted to make it open and accessible for anyone to join in regardless of what instrument they played.

“Ukulele is such a cheerful happy instrument and people just love listening to it, so that’s the basis of the group.”

Colac Otway Shire Council’s Australia Day festivities are at Birregurra Park and along the town’s main street from 10am tomorrow.

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