A SELL-out audience at the Lighthouse Theatre raised thousands of dollars for cancer research on Saturday, but also sparked plans for an annual Warrnambool musical festival.
Homemade Jam — Concert for Cancer organiser and performer Russ Goodear said that as a result of the successful event, Shipwreck Coast Marketing had approached him to help develop and stage a Warrnambool-based music festival.
Potentially running in October next year or during the 2013/14 summer, Goodear said the festival could showcase Warrnambool’s tourism attractions as well as its deep pool of musical talent.
“Last night was a bit like a festival, with 16 amazingly talented local bands and artists crammed into three hours,” he said. “There have been some discussions to develop an authentic Warrnambool music festival to represent the city really well and be sustainable into the future.
“The reason the Port Fairy Folk Festival is successful is that it’s authentic and has evolved in its own way
“We need to develop a festival that has that quality as well and will attract people from afar.
“Even after the show last night people were saying to me they were amazed at the variety of talent that comes out of this town.
“We are a great city and have all the infrastructure here, the population base, and certainly the musical talent, the energy and passion — now we just need to get the formula right.”
Goodear said since the Homemade Jam event had run without cost, all proceeds would support prostate and breast cancer foundations, as well as Peter’s Project.
“Everything was donated, the venue, the artists’ time, the equipment.
“During changeovers we had the opportunity to deliver really important health messages about cancer,
“We wanted to make sure people know it’s important to get their check-ups because early diagnosis gives a better chance of survival.
“Raising money and raising awareness is important, but if we could alert just one person into getting an early check-up and save a life, it was worth it.”
For the wide array of local talent, Goodear said performing at the Lighthouse Theatre was “like a magic carpet ride”.
“Most performers said they just loved the experience of performing on stage to 500 people.
“A lot of bands playing last night usually play in little hotels and weddings on little stages, so to be there on that stage with the quality of sound was the sort of moment in a music journey where you can say ‘This is what we play for’.”