Geoffrey Robertson to play Port Fairy Folk Festival

DRAWCARD: Geoffrey Robertson has been locked in as a headline for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival. Robertson will talk about the influence folk festival has had on society.
DRAWCARD: Geoffrey Robertson has been locked in as a headline for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival. Robertson will talk about the influence folk festival has had on society.

HIGH-PROFILE academic and author Geoffrey Robertson will be part of the bill for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival.

Festival program director Caroline Moore said she is thrilled to have Robertson on board.

“I have been talking to Geoffrey for 18 months about coming to Port Fairy”, Ms Moore said.

“In his shows, he will be talking about the role folk music plays in documenting history and the issues society faces.

“Folk music has not only entertained over the years but it has also played an important part in driving social change.

“When you look back, you see the great protest songs by folk artists in the 60s and 70s and the impact they had.

“He will talk about life and his wonderful take on it.”

Since its beginning in 1977, the Port Fairy Folk Festival has evolved into a showcase of world music.

While it has a writers program in place, the appearance of Robertson is the first major foray into a headline act at the festival that is not musical.

Ms Moore believes Robertson will be well accepted at Port Fairy.

“The early reaction we have received has been wonderful, people are really excited,” she said.

“Our audience has a hunger for being challenged so Geoffrey will be absorbing for them.

“I feel very proud our festival will be hosting him.”

Sydney-born Robertson has been a prolific author with his latest work An Inconvenient Genocide: Who Now Remembers the Armenians released in 2014.

He has also had a presence on television, having hosted the Geoffrey Robertson's Hypotheticals show on ABC and has forged a reputation as a human rights barrister.

Robertson’s addition to the folk festival bill comes a week after the Doug Anthony Allstars were announced as coming to Port Fairy.

The Doug Anthony Allstars were formed in the 1980s and were one of the biggest acts in the country until calling it a day in 1994.

In 2013, the group decided to reunite, with original members Paul McDermott and Tim Ferguson being joined by Paul Livingston.

The group quickly picked up where they left off, thrilling audiences around Australia in their return shows.

This momentum carried onto the international stage with the group receiving rave reviews for their shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2016.

Organisers of the festival in the Scottish capital were so impressed with the group, they invited them back to perform a full season in 2017.

Tickets are on sale now for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival which will held on the weekend of March 9-12.