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Moonbird Festival | King Island, Tasmania
April 13-21, 2024. Presented by the Bowerbird Collective

 

 

 

 

April 13-21, 2024

ABOUT


After a highly successful launch in 2023, the Moonbird Festival returns in 2024, celebrating one of the most spectacular places on Earth, King Island, with music, art, food & wine.

Founded and directed by the Bowerbird Collective, this event brings together some of Australia's finest musicians for a series of spellbinding concerts.

The moonbird, or the Short-tailed Shearwater, is an iconic species of great cultural and ecological significance to the islands of the Bass Strait. The birds depart their colonies on King Island at the end of April to begin an annual 30,000km migration.

The Moonbird Festival unites art, science and conservation, and includes local culinary delights, and a series of intimate, world-class performances.

FESTIVAL OVERVIEW

  • Saturday, April 13

    5:00pm - Festival & Exhibition Opening - Waterwings Gallery
    Exhibition of local and interstate artists. Short performance by the Bowerbird Collective.

  • Sunday, April 14

    4:00pm - Artist Talk - King Island Gallery
    This free event features an artist talk by the Bowerbird Collective and a short performance as part of the 'Birds' exhibition. Please register using the Moonbird Festival ticketing page.

  • Thursday, April 18

    5:00pm - Guest Speaker - Currie Town Hall
    TBA

    6:00pm - Food & drinks - Currie Town Hall

    7:00pm - Opening Concert - Currie Town Hall
    Whispering Walls, an unmissable cinematic concert experience with live music by the Van Diemen's Fiddles

  • Friday, April 19

    7:30pm - Evening Recital - King Island Brewhouse
    Where Water Meets - folk duo

  • Saturday, April 20

    11:00am - Morning Soirée at Red Hut
    Australian, world, classical & folk music
    5:30pm - Waterwings Concert
    String quartets with canapés

  • Sunday, April 21

    9:30am - Free morning performance - Currie Harbour
    Shakuhachi
    11:00am - Morning Soirée at Yellow Rock
    Solo Bach & string duos
    5:30pm - Closing Concert - Currie Town Hall
    Inspiring & uplifting music by all the festival artists

     

FESTIVAL PROGRAM DETAILS

5:00pm - Waterwings Gallery
Festival & Exhibition Opening
Exhibition TBA 

Free entry.

The festival opening, hosted by Waterwings Gallery, will feature a performance by the Bowerbird Collective and the opening of an exhibition of works by local and interstate artists.

4:00pm - King Island Gallery
Artist Talk & Performance
Part of the 'Birds' Exhibition

Free entry by registration (limited space).

This free event features an artist talk by the Bowerbird Collective and a short performance. Please register using the Moonbird Festival ticketing page.

5:00pm - Guest Speaker - Currie Town Hall
TBA

6:00pm - Food & drinks - Currie Town Hall
Food and drinks will be available for purchase prior to the concert, with proceeds supporting the King Island Landcare Group.

7:00pm - Opening Concert - Currie Town Hall

"Whispering Walls" - a multimedia experience to not be missed.

A dazzling journey through sight and sound that explores the stories of place and its people by Tasmania’s own Van Diemen’s Fiddles, featuring Van Diemen's Band Artistic Director Julia Fredersdorff and King Island Artists in Residence, Emily Sheppard and Rachel Meyers. 

Adults $20
Under 18 $5

7:30pm - Folk Night - King Island Brewhouse

Join Tasmanian chamber-folk duo Where Water Meets as they weave an enchanting musical narrative inspired by the wilds of Tasmania.

$30

Food and drinks available at the Brewhouse.

11:00am - Morning Soirée at Red Hut
Experience one of King Island's most spectacular homes with a morning concert, views of Colliers Beach and a glass of champagne.

$50 including cheese plates and a glass of your choice.

A program of Australian classical and folk music.


5:30pm - Evening Soirée at Waterwings Studio
Enjoy a stunning concert in Currie with exceptional local produce by Salt & Thyme in association with King Island Seafoods.

$80 including delicious and plentiful canapés

Music of divine and spiritual beauty for string quartet from the renaissance and baroque.

9:30am - Free performance at Currie Harbour
Improvisation and sound bathing. Location TBC.


11:00am - Morning Soirée at Yellow Rock
The incredible 'Whale Tail House' at Yellow Rock plays host to the festival's second morning recital, with beautiful views, wine and cheese.

$50 including cheese plates and a glass of your choice.

A program of solo and duo violin and cello repertoire performed by Simone Slattery and Anthony Albrecht, including the music of J.S. Bach.


5:30pm - Closing Concert - Currie Town Hall
The grand finale in Currie, featuring performances by all festival artists, with food and wine available.

Adults $20
Under 18 $5

*The Bowerbird Collective reserves the right to change event details, including the performers and program, without notice.

2024 ARTISTS

Simone Slattery - Tiger Webb

Simone Slattery

Co-Director, Violin/Vocals
Anthony Albrecht - Katie Eynon

Anthony Albrecht

Co-Director, Cello
Julia Fredersdorff - Albert Comper

Julia Fredersdorff

Violin/Vocals
Katie Yap - Darren James

Katie Yap

Viola/Vocals
Emily Sheppard - Bruce Moyle

Emily Sheppard

Violin/Vocals
Rachel Meyers - Jonathan Wherrett

Rachel Meyers

Violin/Vocals
Yyan Ng - Bruce Moyle

Yyan Ng

Multi-instrumentalist

BIOGRAPHIES

The Bowerbird Collective are internationally acclaimed as multimedia storytellers and performers crossing the arts/science divide. They won a 2020 Ruby Award for their work ‘Where Song Began’, and the 2022 Independent Arts Foundation Award for Innovation for their work 'Life on Land's Edge'. They have close relationships with major conservation organisations including BirdLife International and the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership to communicate conservation objectives through performance, both live and digital. They have produced more than 250 concerts on tours throughout regional Australia in the last five years. Their albums of threatened birdsong and frog calls, ‘Songs of Disappearance’, released with BirdLife Australia and the Australian Museum FrogID project respectively, reached the Top 5 on the ARIA Albums chart in 2022, ahead of Adele and Ed Sheeran. The Bowerbird Collective created the musical soundtrack to 'Our Country', a 2022 production by Australian Geographic, Northern Pictures and Tourism Australia. The are founders and directors of the Moonbird Festival on King Island, TAS, and the Lyrebird Festival in the Blue Mountains, NSW.

Violinist and composer Simone Slattery is one of Australia’s most versatile young musicians and creators, with a passion for music from a wide range of eras. She performs across Australia and internationally as both soloist and ensemble member, holds a PhD from the University of Adelaide, and was a 2019 Churchill Fellow. Simone has collaborated with artists and ensembles in Japan, Korea, the UK, Canada, the USA and throughout Europe, and has toured extensively across regional Australia. Her performances have been reviewed as “virtuosic” and “infinitely expressive”. She has appeared with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Australian Haydn Ensemble, Ironwood, Pinchgut Opera, Van Diemen’s Band and New Vintage Baroque.

A co-founder of the award-winning Bowerbird Collective, Simone’s compositions have been performed across the world, and her artistic creations described as “stunning”. Recent productions include Where Song Began, Invisible Connections, and the World Migratory Bird Day Virtual Choir. Simone was commissioned by the Art Gallery of South Australia to create the soundscape for ‘Clarice Beckett – The Present Moment’, an acclaimed retrospective of one of Australia’s greatest artists, in early 2021.

With an international performance and production career, Anthony Albrecht has developed a reputation as an impresario of world-class events characterised by generosity, outreach and connection to issues of social justice, conservation and sustainability. He is co-founder and CEO of the Bowerbird Collective, an organisation devoted to forging stronger connections to the natural world. With a passion for making classical music accessible and relevant in the 21st century, cellist Anthony Albrecht began producing concerts shortly after graduating from The Juilliard School in 2014. Committed to musical outreach, Anthony has undertaken a self-managed solo tour of over 80 concerts in regional Australia called ‘Bach to the Bush’. He is founder and director of the Lapwing Music Festival in the UK

A musician known for his “dramatic flair” and “fluent and virtuosic” performances (Seen and Heard International, Sydney Morning Herald), he has appeared with Pinchgut Opera, Van Diemen's Band, the Australian Romantic and Classical Orchestra, the Australian Haydn Ensemble, New Vintage Baroque (NYC) and Il Pomo d’Oro. Recent solo engagements include an appearance in the woods of East Sussex as a guest of Sam Lee’s ‘Singing with Nightingales’ project, a recital at the Handel and Hendrix House in London, a performance of Haydn’s Cello Concerto in D at the Newcastle Music Festival and as concerto soloist with the Adelaide Baroque Orchestra.

Brisbane-born violist Katie Yap started out her musical life playing the violin, but after being converted by her high school teacher Loreta Fin, has officially joined the dark side and hasn’t looked back since!

Now based in Melbourne, she performs at the highest level in modern and historically-informed ensembles including the Australian World Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Van Diemen’s Band, and Academy of Ancient Music (UK). Her greatest love is chamber music, and she’s a founding member of Wattleseed Ensemble, the Chrysalis Harp Trio, and prog-baroque quartet Croissants & Whiskey.

She is artistic director of Wattleseed Ensemble, and 3MBS’s women-in-music festival Music, She Wrote. Winner of the 2022 Freedman Classical Fellowship, her project explores the nexus of folk, baroque, and new music styles, and a life-long fascination with improvisation.

Melbourne-born violinist Julia Fredersdorff studied baroque violin with Lucinda Moon at the Victorian College of the Arts, before travelling to the Netherlands to study with Enrico Gatti at The Royal Conservatorium in The Hague. Based in Paris for close to a decade, Julia freelanced with some of the finest European ensembles, such as Les Talens Lyriques, Les Folies Françoises, Le Concert d’Astrée, Le Parlement de Musique, Ensemble Matheus, Les Paladins, Il Complesso Barocco, New Dutch Academy, Ensemble Aurora and Bach Concentus.

Now resident again in Australia, Julia is the founder and Artistic Director of the Tasmanian baroque ensemble, Van Diemen’s Band. She is a founding member of the chamber ensemble Ironwood, the twice ARIA-nominated baroque trio Latitude 37, and founder and former Artistic Director of the annual Peninsula Summer Music Festival on the Mornington Peninsula. Julia has appeared in major arts festivals around Australia and New Zealand and has toured extensively across Europe, from Reykjavík to Wroclaw, Madeira to Venice.

Julia has participated in nearly forty international recordings for the labels BIS, Virgin Classics, Deutsche Grammophon, Accent, Accord, Naïve, Erato, Passacaille, Ambronay, ABC Classic, Vexations840 and Tall Poppies.

Emily Sheppard is a Tasmanian violinist, violist, improviser and composer who is inspired by unconventional and resonant places and spaces, as well as science and the environment. Trained at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne, she is in the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Van Diemen’s Band and has collaborated with Paul Kelly, Katie Noonan, DJ Spooky and Michael Kieran Harvey.

Emily spent four weeks in residency in Tasmanian caves in 2017, supported by Arts Tasmania funding. Throughout this period she composed several new works for solo viola/violin, incorporating extended techniques such as alternative tunings, prepared violin and singing while playing. She has curated performances in Hastings Cave, Marakoopa Cave and Mt Wellington/kunanyi observation shelter, supported by Arts Tasmania and Hobart City Council grants.

Emily has toured Europe with the Australian Youth Orchestra, and has played at festivals all over Australia, including Mona Foma, Dark Mofo, Ten Days on the Island, Darwin Festival, Brisbane Festival, Melbourne Festival, Canberra International Music Festival, Cygnet Folk Festival, Fractangular and A Festival Called Panama.

Tasmanian musician, composer and musicologist Rachel Meyers’ career spans world, folk, and experimental music genres. 

As an instrumentalist, Rachel has recorded several albums and toured nationally, performing at festivals around the country including A Festival Called Panama, Dark MOFO, MONA FOMA, National Folk Festival, Cygnet Folk Festival, Maldon Folk Festival, and more.  She has collaborated on original music for her various ensembles over the past two decades, most recently for Meyers & McNamara, an experimental chamber-folk duo.

Rachel has worked on several competitively-funded projects, including for the Australian Research Council and Arts Tasmania. She has worked in schools as a Teaching Artist with The Songroom and taught instrumental music for over fifteen years. Rachel is currently studying for a PhD in environmental sound art and musicology, and in receipt of a prestigious Research Training Program Scholarship.

She is deeply passionate about working with ecological and musicological stories of place and identity, and using art as a tool for real, tangible community change. Commissioned work Southern Ecophony: Wind and Water debuted at Next Wave Festival 2020 and will be installed at McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery in 2021.

Yyan Ng is a multi-instrumentalist, improviser, composer, collaborator. Yyan sings and plays acoustic guitar, wadaiko (taiko drums), Shakuhachi, and various stringed, percussion and woodwind instruments. He leads a few contemporary bands and the Launceston Taiko group Taiko Oni Jima, and has been involved in various projects as a guitarist and percussionists.

He is core member of chamber folk trio Where Water Meets, and plays with as a Wadaiko and shakuhachi duo with Brian Ritchie, with contemporary folk trio with Skyglass (Anne Norman and Emily Sheppard), and with five piece experimental jazz band Late Hall.  He has led and directed, and played in projects for MONA FOMA, Ten days on the island, Dark MOFO, Cygnet Folk Festival, Junction Arts Festival. He has also played all over Australia in festivals such as Woodford folk festival, National folk festival, Falls Festival, Australian Wooden Boat Festival, Taste of Tasmania, Festivale etc. 

Where Water Meets are a chamber-folk collaborative duo blending classical, world and folk modalities. Founded by Emily Sheppard (violin/viola/vox) and Yyan Ng (guitar/shakuhachi/vox), they are developing a unique harmonic language, chasing a sound that alludes to the experience of the wilderness. They have been commissioned to create and direct work by Big hART/MONA FOMA (Acoustic Life of Boat Sheds, 2021), Beaker Street/Nyrstar (The Secret Life of Eels, 2021), and Hadley’s Hotel (Trail of Terrific Tales, 2022). Trail of Terrific Tales won Gold for Best Tourism Initiative at the 2023 Tasmanian Hospitality Association Awards. They also scored the short film ‘We Belong to the Land’ about kunanyi/Mount Wellington. Their music has been performed by the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Van Diemen’s Fiddles, and the Bowerbird Collective. Where Water Meets have also worked extensively as science communicators, creating ‘Imagining lutruwita’s Deep Time: A Journey through Science, Art and Song’ with paleoecologist Penelope Jones and artist Amy Jackett, presented by Birch’s Bay Art farm (2021), and the Unconformity (2021). They performed ‘Searching for the Eel song’ for TEDx Hobart 2023, for which they invented and played on eel-skin instruments.

Van Diemen's Fiddles (VDF) is a quartet of Tassie fiddlers combining the exceptional talents of Van Diemen’s Band artistic director Julia Fredersdorff on baroque violin, Klezmer and folk fiddler Rachel Meyers, and Classical/ folk/ experimental violinist Emily Sheppard. In 2024 they are joined by modern/Baroque violist and Freedman Fellow Katie Yap.

Equally at home performing in concert halls or pubs, VDF tour across Tasmania creating community projects and accessible, multi-disciplinary cultural events across a variety of audience demographics.

TRAVEL AND ACCOMODATION

  • Daily flights are available from Melbourne and Tasmania with Rex, Sharp and King Island Airlines.
  • Accommodation, car hire and other activities can be found via www.kingisland.org.au

TICKETS - BOOK NOW

Very limited tickets available

Cash payments can be arranged using the contact form below.

2024 EXHIBITIONS

'Birds'
March 22 - May 5

King Island Gallery

KGS 'Take off' (Large)

Kate Gorringe-Smith, 'Take Off'

In March and April the focus of the King Island Gallery will be on the beauty and fragility of birds. The gallery will be filled with artworks of migratory, endangered and other species, including the 'Wall of Wings', a large scale installation of Kate Gorringe-Smith, and winners of the 2023 Birdlife Australia photographic competition. Additionally, there will bean invited artists’ exhibition and an open invitation for local creatives to fill the gallery shop with bird themed works.

Don't miss the opening at 5:30pm, Friday March 22nd.

KI Council black and white

'The Art of King Island'
April 14, 20, 21, 27, 28 or by appointment

Waterwings Studio

Dianne Blake - Melaleuca cropped

Dianne Blake, 'King Island Melaleuca', 2015

Marilyn and Ken Chapman will welcome guests into their Currie home, Waterwings Studio, for this beautiful exhibition featuring local & visiting artists. The exhibition will draw on works from a range of media.

For many years, Marilyn and Ken ran the Portside Links Gallery at Grassy, which became a major tourism drawcard and played host to the Bowerbird Collective’s 2019 performance of Where Song Began. Their new home and gallery just outside of Currie is a spectacular space with views of the Southern Ocean.

The exhibition will open at 5pm on Saturday, 13th of April.
Then open 10-4pm, April 14, 20, 21, 27, 28 or by appointment. Ph: 0427593233

2024 FUNDRAISING

The Moonbird Festival seeks to promote strong connections to nature on King Island. In addition to being a vital stopover for threatened migratory species such as the moonbird, Orange-Bellied Parrot and Swift Parrot, King Island is home to three endemic, critically-endangered bird species: the King Island Scrubtit, the King Island Brown Thornbill and the King Island Black Currawong.

Fundraising activities will be held during the festival to support recovery work for these threatened bird species by the King Island Landcare Group.

OCEAN DANCER - FAIRY PRION copy 2

Katherine Cooper
Ocean Dancer IV - Southern Fairy Prion

Contact Us

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The Bowerbird Collective
VDB
Creative Australia
REX
King Island Landcare
Head Wines
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Australian Ethical
GreenCollar

©The Bowerbird Collective, 2024. Supported by Creative Australia's Plus1 Program.