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Shepparton Art Gallery Abuzz in March

The Shepparton Art Gallery will be a hive of activity this March with a new exhibition opening, art classes commencing, and a coffee morning being held.

Opening from Thursday 3rd March at the gallery is ‘VCE ART 2004’, an inaugural exhibition held as part of the SheppARTon Festival. In its ninth year, the exhibition features the works of students in their final years of VCE and is a collaboration between the Shepparton Art Gallery and local art teachers.

Leanne Willis, Director of the Shepparton Art Gallery, said, “For many of these artists, it is their first time exhibiting in a gallery or even having their work on public display. The exhibition aims to encourage, recognise and value the talents of the young people of our region, and the artworks that are generated present facets of their imaginations, as well as their concerns and views of the world.”

For those who are interested in creating art, there is an opportunity to join in the upcoming after school or life drawing classes at the Shepparton Art Gallery.

“Commencing Tuesday 1st March from 4.00 to 5.00 pm and running for five weeks, the after school classes are aimed at 8 to 12 year olds. Participants will use a range of mediums to explore real world images, and then simplify, exaggerate, or distort these to create their own works of art. Bookings are required, and the total cost is $40.00 and includes materials,” Leanne said.

“The life drawing classes feature prominent artist Tim Hocking as the tutor and commence on Thursday 3rd March from 5.30 to 7.30 pm. The cost of the five sessions is $100.00, and includes materials. Bookings are essential.”

“Wednesday 2nd March is the next Friends of the Shepparton Art Gallery Coffee Morning. This month’s speaker is John Head, the Chair of the SheppARTon Festival Visual Arts Subcommittee. People are welcome to come along for tea and coffee from 10.00 am and at 10.30 am they can listen to John talk about this year’s exciting SheppARTon Festival program of events. Bookings aren’t required; however the cost is $2.00 for those who aren’t members of the gallery.”

“The ‘No Exit: A Tale of Two Cities: George Gittoes in New York and Baghdad is also still on display at the gallery until 10th April,” Ms Willis added.

All events are happening at the Shepparton Art Gallery which is located in the Eastbank Centre, 70 Welsford Street, Shepparton. Admission to the gallery is free and it is open seven days a week from 10.00 am to 4.00 pm. For more information or bookings, the gallery on 5832 9861.

SheppARTon Festival Journey Welcomed by Council

The Greater Shepparton City Council is welcoming the beginning of the 2005 SheppARTon Festival, ‘The Journey’, and its program of events over the coming weeks.

The Mayor, Cr Anne McCamish, said the Council encourages local residents to support the events that will visit the region for this year’s festival.

“We wish the organisers of the SheppARTon Festival well for the coming week of preparation for what has become the leading arts and entertainment events on our calendar,” Cr McCamish said.

“The Festival has been a success in the past and this year’s program theme of ‘The Journey’ helps to celebrate the extent to which arts and culture have grown over the past nine years.” 

“The SheppARTon Festival is a celebration of extraordinary things occurring in familiar places and the journey of discovery along the way, so it is fitting that this year’s theme recognises this,” Cr McCamish concluded.

The SheppARTon Festival will be officially launched at a free event to be held at Eastbank on Thursday 3rd March at 7.00 pm.  The opening will include a performance by students from the Victorian College of the Arts, drinks and nibbles, and an opportunity to view four new art exhibitions.  Please RSVP for catering purposes to the Riverlinks Box Office on 5832 9511 if you intend attending the Festival launch.

For further information about the SheppARTon Festival and the program of events, contact Heather Gange on 5832 9710, or access the SheppARTon Festival website at

The SheppARTon Festival, in partnership with the University of Melbourne, will run from 3rd to 14th March.

Riverlinks Presents a Show that is Off the Planet

Ever thought your granny was off the planet… literally?

‘Granny is an Alien’ is a children’s show from Spare Parts Puppet Theatre and will be performed at the WestSide Performing Arts Centre in Mooroopna at 11.00 am and 1.00 pm on Wednesday 23rd February.

From the company that brought us, ‘The Bugalug’s Bum Thief’, ‘Granny is an Alien’ is a light-hearted story about Alex, who becomes convinced that her granny is an alien.

Greater Shepparton City Council’s Manager of Performing Arts and Conventions, Rob Robson, said the play celebrates the differences between generations and the bonds that tie them together.

“Alex’s overactive imagination leads her on a journey of discovery that suggests that all is not what it seems,” Mr Robson said.

Throw in a once in a lifetime occurrence of a comet, gazillions of chickens and an unconventional CB radio obsessed grandma and you have a charming, heart warming, and disarming tale that links the generations.

The show features rod puppets, hand puppets and pop up style puppets.

“Author Michael Barlow performs the show solo, and says ‘Granny is an Alien’ reminds us that grandparents and their grandchildren share a unique relationship but their worlds are completely different,” Mr Robson added.

“It will be a great show for grandparents to take their grandchildren along to and is ideally suited to pre-school and junior primary age groups.”

‘Granny is an Alien’ will be performed at the WestSide Performing Arts Centre at 11.00 am and 1.00 pm on Wednesday 23rd February.  The show’s duration is 45 minutes, with no interval. 

For bookings or more information, please contact the Riverlinks Box Office on 5832 9511.  The Box Office is open from 10.00 am to 5.00 pm on weekdays and 10.00 am to 4.00 pm on weekends.

Catering Contract Awarded for Eastbank and WestSide

The Greater Shepparton City Council has awarded a contract to Hayes Catering to provide catering services for the Eastbank Centre and WestSide Performing Arts Centre events.

The Mayor, Cr Anne McCamish, said the contract was awarded after extensive consultation with the venues’ users.

“It is important that the catering services provided by our premier arts and entertainment venues are compatible with all users and enhance the atmosphere and experience for patrons,” Cr McCamish said.

The contract will comprehensively provide the following services:

• Operation of the foyer cafT/bar 7 days a week at the Eastbank Centre
• Operation of foyer bars in support of performances at both the Eastbank Centre and WestSide Performing Arts Centre
• Catering services to all ‘business hours’ functions held at the venues, ranging from meetings and seminars to major national conferences and expos
• Catering services to all functions held at the venues out of hours, ranging from including receptions, dinners, dinner dances, balls and celebrations

“Users hiring the venues for functions and conferences will have the opportunity to negotiate a catering service directly with Eastbank that will best suit their needs” added Cr McCamish.

The contract is awarded for an initial period of five years. 

Riverlinks Presents First Afternoon Delight for 2005

Riverlinks will present its first show in the popular ‘Afternoon Delights’ series for 2005 when Issi Dye visits the Eastbank Centre on Monday 7th February.

The Greater Shepparton City Council’s Manager for Performing Arts and Conventions, Mr Rob Robson, said the show was a tribute to the performances of Al Jolson. 

“Issi Dye, a popular singer in his own right during the 60s and 70s, will present a very enjoyable afternoon of songs made famous by Al Jolson, including ‘Swanee’ and ‘Mammy’,” Mr Robson said.

“Audiences will be taken on a trip ‘Down the Mississippi’, following the story of the man recognised as one of the world’s greatest entertainers.”

The Afternoon Delights program offers an opportunity for residents to be entertained by a variety of acts throughout the year, during the day.

“As always, afternoon tea is provided and there will be lucky door prizes up for grabs.  The audience will also have an opportunity to meet with Issi Dye after the performance.”

“This is a particularly important program for those patrons who find it difficult to go out during the evening, and we find it is very well received. Most of our afternoon shows reach full capacity audiences, which is wonderful,”
Mr Robson said.

`Mammy – The Very Best Songs of Al Jolson’ will be held at the Eastbank Centre on Monday 7th February at 1.30 pm.  Tickets are available at the Riverlinks Box Office on 5832 9511, or in person at the Eastbank Centre, Welsford Street, Shepparton.

For more information about the show, or the 2005 Afternoon Delights program, please contact the Riverlinks Box Office.