Dreamfields showcases region’s young talent at Henty


Popular Albury band, ELK, will play at the Dreamfields Festival on the Thursday.

Youth across the Border region are being given a unique opportunity to showcase their creative talents at the 2018 Henty Machinery Field Days.

The Dreamfields Creative Youth program culminates every year in the annual Dreamfields Festival at the Henty Machinery Field Days, incorporating music, creative writing and photography.

Dreamfields co-ordinator Craig Dent said the events provided a critical platform for young rural people to put their creative endeavours on display.

“Dreamfields has forged a fantastic partnership with HMFD and we are now in our fifth year,’’ Mr Dent said.

The 2018 HMFD Dreamfields line-up opens on Tuesday, September 19 with Beechworth duo, The Inner Vision, at noon and Iva Mahoni at 1.30pm.

The Inner Vision comprises Asha Bright on vocals and guitar, and Indigo Walker-Stelling on piano.

Asha and Indigo competed in Freeza Push Start Battle of the Bands where they were runners-up in the local heats.

The Inner Vision has also competed in the Rockfest Battle of the Bands in the last two years.

Last year they won best original in the finals, leading them to record their first single, Jealous, on Triple J Unearthed High.

This year, Asha, 14, and Indigo, 15, again competed and won best duo for the local heats.

Popular local band, ELK, is back again this year to perform for Dreamfields audiences on Thursday, September 20 at 10.30am and 1.30pm.

In March, ELK independently released their debut EP, Night Hour.

Seamlessly fusing folk, soft pop and rock, the band has its origins at Xavier High School, Albury, for members Nick Keogh, Tom White, Jack Mitsch, Luke and James Worth.

Nick Keogh co-won the HMFD Dreamfields song award in 2017 and took part in an exchange to the UK in May.

Other regional Dreamfields musicians performing on the Farm Gate and Country Lifestyle stages will be Ayla Spargo, Alexandra Mason, Iva Mahoni and Alice Whitford.

Alice, 18, is a Year 12 student from Marion College, Myrtleford, and completed a Dreamfields creative youth workshop earlier this year.

She has played piano for more than 10 years and also plays guitar, banjo, mandolin and sings.

Alexandra Mason is a young pianist and composer from Allans Flat, and has taken part in the Yackandandah Young Players production, The Last Boy on Earth.

Singer, songwriter and guitarist Iva Mahoni won the 2018 Henty Battle of the Bands, was runner-up in the Wodonga Freeza Push Start, performed at open mic nights at Albury’s Retro Café, and regularly plays at Amici on Dean in Albury most weekends.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to share my music at a young age and hope to further enhance my skills as a musician for years to come,’’ Iva said.

Students aged 12 to 18 taking part in the Dreamfields workshops or Creative Youth program receive free entry to the awards.

The Dreamfield Festival award winners will be announced on the Farm Gate stage at 1pm on September 20.

This year’s winners and runner-up will share in prizes including a $1000 creative youth mentorship from Dreamfields, $600 value recording at David Wilson Studios, $570 I-pad Air from Kirinari Community Services, $400 Foto Supplies printing voucher, $100 Gold Class Regent Cinemas voucher and $100 reading lamp from Beacon Lighting.

Other regional businesses contributing prizes include Dymocks, Zone Laser Tag and Timmy Gs.

The Dreamfields showcase will include photography and creative writing on display in the Country Lifestyle pavilion.

Henty Machinery Field Days has partnered with the Dreamfields program since 2014.

HMFD chairman Ross Edwards said the co-operative was a strong advocate of youth involvement in the field days.

“They will be the ones ensuring rural Australia prospers and has a sustainable future as we head towards 2050,’’ Mr Edwards said.

The not-for-profit Henty Machinery Field Days will lend in-kind support to assist the Dreamfields program reach a wider audience in coming years.

For more information on Dreamfields Festivals and creative workshops contact Craig Dent at craig@craigdent.com.au