By Evelyn Leckie
Kilmore is set to experience musicians, songwriters, belly dancers and many more talented acts at the regional busking championships next month.
The competition runs in conjunction with the Kilmore Art Expo, on April 12 to 14.
Talent from the local areas as well as musicians from metropolitan Melbourne have applied to compete in the championships where the winners will go on to compete in the Australian National Busking Championships in regional NSW.
The initiative comes from the Southern Mitchell Rotary Club and Kilmore Art Society.Rotary member and event organiser Rose King said she was passionate about bringing life back into Kilmore.
“Fifteen years or so, Kilmore was a popular destination for Melbournians to visit because of our beautiful antique stores,” she said.
“We have fewer visitors now – but I’m passionate about bringing people back to Kilmore.”
Ms King said the event would promote performance art and provide exposure for emerging artists while also supporting the visual arts via Kilmore Art Expo.
Classical guitarist Alejandro Aguanta will be one of the many entrants taking a shot at first prize.
Mr Aguanta said he would play a mixture of traditional Bolivian songs, worldwide tunes and even tango music.
“I’d describe my music as easy going and relaxing,” Mr Aguanta said.
“I’ll be travelling all the way from the south eastern suburbs of Melbourne.
“I’ve competed in the past but this time it’s more about showcasing my music to the community and other buskers.”
Belly dancer Aleesha Attard will also be shimmying and showcasing her moves on the day.
With 15 years of experience, Ms Attard has performed at festivals, weddings, engagements, birthday parties and corporate events.
“The dance is quite vibrant, entertaining, mesmerising, fun, exciting and full of life,” Ms Attard said.
Ms Attard will be dancing to Arabic and Turkish music with colourful and traditional belly dancing costumes.
The competition consists of several categories – primary, secondary, open and people’s choice.
Winners will be announced at the finals concert, between 4-6pm.
Three judges will observe performers during the day and audience members can vote for their favourite performers by contributing busking votes to performers’ hats or guitar cases.
Over $6,500 of cash prizes are up for grabs and performers wishing to compete can still register.
“We’ve had so much support from the community – North Vic Constructions, Just in Time Transport Romsey and Victoria Wide Tyre Services are a few of the many businesses supporting the event,” Ms King said.
For more information, visit ‘buskingkilmore’ on Facebook.