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17 February 2021
By SARAH MATTHEWS
New and returning Horsham Arts Council members are busy preparing for a Disney-themed concert designed to ‘give something back to the community’.
Council secretary Faye Johns said the 2020 committee was determined to give its members an opportunity to get back to doing what they love while thanking the community for its ongoing support.
“Our community has offered us incredible support throughout the years,” she said.
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“When we were discussing what our performance options were with regards to restrictions at the time, we realised a fully fledged musical production was not viable.
“We also wanted to perform something family friendly.
“We love Disney and a concert series including many of the well-known and loved classics seemed a perfect fit.”
The committee will present When You Wish Upon A Star – an evening of Disney classics in three shows from March 12 to 14.
The cast will perform evening and matinee shows on the Saturday and a twilight show on the Sunday.
For the first time ever, the arts council decided roles based solely on online auditions, which involved singing sections of two contrasting Disney songs in a set song list.
“We all learnt a lot quickly about recording oneself and sending a clip in,” Mrs Johns said.
“In one way it was easier, because live auditions can feel quite intimidating – 20-plus years on and long-time HAC members still get nervous through the process.”
Mrs Johns, who is also the concert’s executive producer, said the Disney showcase would feature familiar faces along with several new ones, including two performers from Ballarat.
“We have been very lucky to have members come from out of town to participate in our shows over the past few years,” she said.
“Often people who come from out of town to audition have a local connection through friends or family, and some just love the show or concert we are doing.
“Driving significant distances is a huge commitment and we are always very appreciative of that effort.”
A cast of 31 is rehearsing three times a week.
Mrs Johns said the committee was excited to present the concert in a new venue, Horsham Church of Christ.
“The church has been developed for use as a community and business space and it’s exciting to think about how we can use the wonderful facilities provided there,” she said.
“We are lucky that with current restrictions we can fit more than 200 people in our audience. Of course, we are aware this could change, but we are hopeful.”
Mrs Johns said Horsham was already abuzz about the concert.
“People are excited and enthusiastic that we are getting out there again,” she said.
“It’s wonderful to be back doing what we love and we are looking forward to sharing a performance with the community who support us and make it possible for us to do what we do.
“It is a gift of appreciation to our audience, our wonderful sponsors, to every one of us after last year.”
The entire February 17, 2021 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!