After an incredible concert Friday night at the Maleny Town Hall, Saturday started at around 7:30am with another breakfast offering of bacon, eggs, hash browns, savoury mince, sausages, fruit, yoghurt, toast, coffee tea and juice. The catering and support at Tranquil Park has been nothing less than incredible. What a fantastic team of people.
The morning of day 3 consisted of more of the same with masterclasses, workshops and demonstrations by Ross Nickerson, Jens Kruger, Mark Miracle, Uwe Kruger, Quentin Fraser and Joel Landsberg. By this time people were rising to the many challenged thrown out by the conference faculty and discussion around the breaks and meal times were focussed on the inspiration provided by the days teachings.
Lunchtime – more food.
The afternoon session gave us all an opportunity to listen first hand to one of the worlds most amazing music trio talk about their early lives as emerging musicians, their discovery of and inspiration from rock, blues, bluegrass and other forms of music, and the influences of those early music forms on their own music. It was a very moving and inspirational presentation listening to Jens and Uwe reflect on the early memories of their childhood and homeland. Joel Landsberg sat between them offering support musically, emotionally and with just as many stories of the Kruger’s history, like a third brother.
By mid afternoon the conference broke up to provide an opportunity for students to move off and rehearse for the evening’s in-house concert. This is a showcase of what they’ve learned and presented before a very supportive group of their peers and the conference faculty over the course of the evening.
Throughout the day Chris Melville of Melville Guitars, gave of his time to personally inspect our instruments, make small adjustments and offer advice of major changes as requested. His attention to detail and some 28 years of experience in building, repairing and setting up instruments was an immense benefit to many of the musicians gathered for the weekend.
Dinner time – more food.
The evening concert begins. Students take to the stage some bathed in fright, others quietly confident and composed. Through out the evening the camaraderie continues to build as students encourage each other both on and off the stage. A fitting finale to the weekends intense training programs, ongoing challenges and many demonstrations.
The Australian Banjo and Bluegrass Conference has developed a winning formula. The efforts Peter Nahuysen of Bellbird Banjos and his brother Mark has delivered yet another great conference aimed at fast tracking development opportunities for bluegrass musicians across Australasia.