Far North goes uke crazy for Cairns Ukulele Festival 2012
The Far North's celebration of all-things ukulele slides into top gear today, with Cairns Ukulele Festival returning for a third big year.
While celebrations began a few weeks back with the launch of the Uke Art Exhibition at Tanks, the main event kicks off today, with a huge program of events and workshops until Sunday.
Anyone who doubted the festival’s ability to capture local hearts and minds should now firmly be eating their words, with bumper crowds expected at all the festival’s signature events, alongside a huge contingent of visiting musicians from Australia and around the world.
The beauty of the ukulele is its simplicity and accessibility – it really is an instrument anyone can play and it’s this spirit of inclusion that makes the festival such a family-friendly event.
That’s not to say you won’t be seeing some talented musicians, though, with some true ukulele maestros set to take the stage.
Visiting performers include Nicky Bomba and his new band Bustamento (see interview on Page 5), Hawaiin stars Herb Ohta Jr, Craig Chee and Derick Sebastian, US virtuosos The Quiet American and Matt Dahlberg, Japan’s fulare_pad, Australia’s own AJ Leonard’s Tropical Lounge, Mike Jackson, Bigger than Benhur, and loads more.
Whether you’re grooving to island sounds at today’s Wavedancer Low Isles Ukulele Cruise, taking part in Saturday’s big World Record Attempt, partying to the wee hours at The Jack with Bustamento or kicking back on Sunday at the concert day, Cairns Ukulele Festival has something for everyone and is well worth checking out!
8am – Wavedancer Low Isles Ukulele Cruise on Quicksilver Low Isles
10am – Tiki carving workshop at Tanks Arts Centre
7pm – Opening night show at Hilton Six Degrees Bar
8am – Eddy Finn Ukulele Mystery Tour featuring
fulare_pad, Craig Chee and Luke Walker
2pm – Ukulele Workshops with headline acts at The Hilton Hotel
7pm – Australian Ukulele Showcase at The Hilton Hotel Ballroom
9am – Ukulele Workshops with headline acts at The Hilton Hotel
12pm – Lanikai Ukulele Day at Fogarty Park including performances and Tiki Carving Workshops
4.30pm – Cairns Ukulele Festival World Record Attempt at Fogarty Park
7.30pm – Late Ukulele Party night with Bustamento, Craig Chee Band and Open Mic at The Jack
10am – Cairns Ukulele Festival Concert Day at Tanks
8pm – Final bids for the Uke Art Exhibition at Tanks
>> Cairns Ukulele Festival runs until Sunday at various locations around town. For more information, see cairnsukulelefestival.net
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Uke crazy: last year's world record attempt at Cairns Ukulele Festival.