mountains and music
A MUSIC loving husband and wife team are among a fresh batch of community residents who are busy revamping the long running Mt Beauty Music Festival.
While last year the festival was looking like it may fold, a fresh team of local residents have poured their efforts into revamping the event, and are excited about both their community and the changes ahead.
Among the new committee are Jos and Dan Ceccanti, with Jos taking the reins as committee president.
Jos said she initially got involved in the festival as the station manager at Alpine Radio.
“Working in radio, I have found a real passion for live music, with studio performances and live gigs,” she said.
“I love the realness, the engagement with the audience, and the whole experience.”
Curious about the festival, Jos and Dan attended a festival AGM, and things just grew from there.
When the festival looked to be heading into recess – or folding altogether - the couple sprang into action.
“I managed to get a group of people together to take it over, a whole fresh new committee,” Jos said.
“We are striving to bring the community something special and introducing some new elements to the festival, based on our family background and the importance of entertaining the whole family to enjoy the festival.
“We have also tried to simplify the festival and focus on bringing tourism to the town.
“It has been a lot of work as we have started from scratch, I have spent too many hours to mention, but I have loved every minute of it.
“We are hoping previous festival goers, the locals and visitors support our festival as these things are essential in small communities.”
Jos said the festival revamp has even spread to its logo – a Bogong Moth, signifying rebirth and renewal.
While the festival is smaller this year, featuring musical favourites The Northern Folk, Charm of Finches and The Hot Springs, the committee is building to a full scale festival in 2019.
“We have chosen three bands that reflect the image of the direction of the festival, bringing vibrance and growth,” Jos said.
“These bands are all in the festival circuit and have a good strong following and reputation for quality entertainment.”
Dan added that the festival is also collaborating with Alpine Shire for a FReeZA event earlier in the day.
“We are hoping that this will join the two for future festivals,” he said, adding that he also wants to help strengthen the connection between the Bright and Mt Beauty communities,” he said.
As a mother, and a local resident, Jos said she wanted to work towards something to benefit the local community.
“I moved here 11 years ago, from Sydney, but I grew up in the valley.
“I have always had a connection with the valley, I love the people, the space and we have such an amazing community, very community focused.”
Both Jos and Dan have attended the festival at some point or another over the years, but Dan - a winemaker – said one of his key memories of the festival was when his family’s winery made their first release of cellar door wines.
“It was a good cultural atmosphere for the town,” he said.
“I was impressed with the committee at the time with the level of quality acts, and general organisation of the festival.” Dan said he loved living in the area. “It’s a beautiful region, I have made many business contacts and friends in the valley,” he said.
Dan said during the festival organisation process, he helped in liaising with the groups involved with the event and spread the word to the community.
He said he is looking forward to the live performances.
“I really enjoy live performances, being up front and personal, and seeing how dedicated the performers are,” he said.
Mt Beauty Music Festival is taking place this year on April 21, and there are still opportunities for volunteers to get involved with the festival.
Information for volunteers and prospective audiences members alike is available on www.musicfestival.org.au, or on the festival’s Facebook page.
Tickets are available via trybooking.com by following the links on the festival page.
FRESH START: Dan and Jos Ceccanti, pictured here with Jos’s daughter Poppy Scherf, are among the new team that has taken over the reins of the Mt Beauty Music Festival.
ON SONG: The Northern Folk are among the bands performing at the Mount Beauty Music Festival this year.