Crowds flock to bat­tle of the bands in Air­lie Beach

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

ABOUT 400 peo­ple flocked to the Whit­sun­day Sail­ing Club on Sun­day af­ter­noon for the Pass­port to Air­lie bat­tle of the bands.

The event saw six soloists and two bands com­pet­ing for the chance to play at the Air­lie Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val tak­ing place from Novem­ber 8-10.

Soloists Kym Jones, Luke An­drews, A.J. Shoe­smith, Tara Wells, Sharon Van Den Berg and Sam Hutchin­son and bands Peace and Plenty and Cac­tus all had just 30 min­utes to im­press a panel of judges and win the crowd.

Event or­gan­iser An­drew Pat­tin­son said the artists were re­quired to per­form at least two orig­i­nal songs “so it pushed a lot of peo­ple and that was great”.

“The crowd got right be­hind ev­ery­body and ev­ery sin­gle artist was stoked,” he said.

At the end of the af­ter­noon, soloist Sam Hutchin­son from Mary­bor­ough was an­nounced as win­ner of the grand prize.

Lo­cal mu­sic en­thu­si­ast and judge Steve An­drew said Sam con- nected quickly with the crowd and had them cheer­ing for her dur­ing her songs.

“She has a spe­cial tal­ent and showed ev­ery­one what she’s ca­pa­ble of,” he said.

Sam, who rocked the house with her ren­di­tion of Cyndi Lau­per’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, said she was re­ally ex­cited to be an­nouced as the win­ner.

“I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to play­ing at the fes­ti­val this year. It will be a great ex­pe­ri­ence and a chance to meet with some great Aus­tralian mu­si­cians,” she said.

Sec­ond and third places went to Cac­tus and Peace and Plenty, both of whom won tick­ets to the fes­ti­val and a place in the line-up for next year.

Mr Pat­tin­son said Sun­day’s event was a “huge suc­cess”, both in its own right and as a pro­mo­tion for the up­com­ing mu­sic fes­ti­val, fea­tur­ing 74 acts.

For more in­for­ma­tion vist www.air­liebeach­mu­sicfes­ti­

POW­ER­HOUSE PER­FOR­MANCE: Steve An­drew, An­nie Free­man, bat­tle of the bands win­ner Sam Hutchin­son and event MC Glen Ta­iapa on Sun­day. Sam took out the com­peti­ton to win a spot in the lineup at the inagu­ral Air­lie Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val.

Photo by An­drew Pat­tin­son/Vampp Pho­tog­ra­phy

PRIZES GALORE: Pass­port to Air­lie judge and mas­ter of cer­e­monies Glen Ta­iapa with Kylie Telford, who won a three-day ticket to the Air­lie Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val, worth $245 via a char­ity raf­fle sup­port­ing ju­nior sail­ing, which was held at Sun­day's event.

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