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7 July, 2021

What about Nollsie

RIGHTO, if you do not own a Georgia Knoll-designed Crossroad Arts T-shirt by now then you are boring. By Joel Bow

But I want to talk about my favourite part of the year.

Being the heathen I am, I do not do churches as I might burst into flames, so religion is out.

But I do love July when Mackay turns it on with a festival that the rest of the country no- tices!

In these crazy rona times, it is magnificent to see that The Mackay Festival of Arts is a to- tal vibe!

I had the privilege to perform in the first festival 30 something years ago and as my parentals were at the Porters VIP balcony tru- ly living, my mates and I were doing roving spot performances and funny skit shows in the grounds and singing with choirs.

Well, the festival is back and the run down is rad.

You all know about Heading North, that performance workshop of a new musical I have been banging on about.

Yeah, yeah, I know.

But soz not soz.

I have also filled you in on Five Women Wearing the Same Dress, Kucom’s hilarious romp that is a Fringe event, so please get tick- ets.

The company owns its own theatre, and the cosy and comfortable setting is simply darling.

Add to that, excellent lights, sound and stag- ing.

There’s cheap booze to enjoy while you laugh your pants off to some great local per- formers in a funny and relevant play.

The five women in the show are all great comic actors lead by a strong female director.

Oh, and do not forget there is a hot bloke playing ‘the bloke’ in his debut stage perfor- mance.

High five to new talent and a play fea- turing a majority female cast. Shut up and grab a VB. Shannon Noll will be flying into Mackay this July...or maybe he is hitching a ride in the back of a Kingswood with some barmaids from Magnums.

Anyways, he is in town, and you can catch Nollsie live on stage at the Wine and Food Day, or if you prefer a more formal affair, and wan- na ditch your rug and plastic cup, you can see him live at The Festival Club.

The after party is offering an array of tasty brews and an assortment of satisfying feeds.

Shannon Noll, one of Australia’s most recog- nisable household names is bringing his signa- ture catchy, high-energy, country rock belting vocals.

Add to that, Silky Fuzz - five musicians who collide to form a blues/reggae/rock band.

The boys showcase an electric experience for young and old as age does not discriminate, if you are keen to flog the dance floor.

Up next is a band I do not shut up about, The Base Coats who are an awesome four- piece funk/soul/rock band who always bring something unique to the table individually, but together create an easy flow of fresh original tunes.

Why not Swing into the Friends of the MECC Jazz Brunch for an indulgent brunch affair with one of Australia’s dashing leading men, the always fabulous, Dale Pengelly.

I do not think any other theatre in Oz has such an amazing group of people like Friends of the MECC.

Volunteers who are giving back to their community is pure heaven.

This year, they have picked a top bloke, to lead the brunch.

They say that when romance collides with cabaret and swing attempts to seduce you once again, you know you have found

The Lounge Suite and the captain out in front is Pengelly, supported of course by his Loungin’ Ladies.

A high-energy celebration of song and dance, The Lounge Suite beckons you to peek behind and through its curtains.

Swoon and sway to timeless tunes from The Rat Pack and Nat King Cole alongside classics from musical theatre favourites Singin’ in the Rain, The Boy from Oz, and Chicago.

I will never forget seeing Dale in Hot Shoe Shuffle in the Sydney season.

Oh, and if any- one saw Saturday Night Fever the musical, you will remember Pengelly’s hilarious disco duck dance class.

About Joel Bow: Joel is a member of the world record for ‘the most people tap dancing in a class at the same time’. No, seriously. We got the record in Mackay a few years ago.

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