Wednesday, 22 February 2023

Members statements

St Kilda Festival

St Kilda Festival

John BERGER (Southern Metropolitan) (09:47): Last week I had the privilege of attending the 42nd St Kilda Festival. It was fantastic to see so many people out and about on such a beautiful day. How lucky we are in Southern Metro to have such a vibrant and flourishing artistic community. St Kilda Festival describes itself as a celebration of community spirit and Australian talent, with the beautiful St Kilda foreshore as the backdrop. I could not think of any better way to put it. Accessible and free – who could ask for anything more?

There were some of the oldies from way back in the day and emerging artists pioneering new creative boundaries. Most importantly, thanks to a partnership with the Archie Roach Foundation, First Nations musicians were put front and centre. Emma Donovan, Radical Son, Sally Dastey and other performers gave a touching tribute to the late, great Archie Roach, reminding us of the rich legacy he has left in Australia. Christine Anu and Yothu Yindi reminded us of the legacy countless First Nations artists continue to build, and strong emerging acts like Abby Bella May and Alice Ivy showed us the future of music is in good hands.

How amazing it is that art and music can thrive in a state like Victoria, with a government that understands the importance of supporting creative industries. I am so proud to be part of a government that meaningfully supports artists with programs like the Creators Fund, a great grant given to artists to aid them in the early experimental phases of their projects. Applications are now open, by the way. The St Kilda Festival represents the best aspects of the Southern Metropolitan community.