Young talent lights up town hall

YOUNG people across the shire prove that ‘Yarriambiack Has Talent’ after performers, photographers and artists showcase their flair to the community on Sunday. 

Performers were greeted by the Yarriambiack Youth Action Councillors who planned and managed the event as part of their Ramp it Rage It Stage It FReeZA program.  

Mayor Graeme Massey welcomed visitors and the afternoon proceeded with the brilliant Ben Clark knocking out a couple of wall trembling solos. 

His voice reverberated through the Warracknabeal Town Hall, as he sang some of his and the crowds favourites, from modern hits to some tunes from Les Miserable.

Many people commented on how great the sound of his voice was inside the Hall.  Ben himself said how he loves performing in venues like this that allow the power and range of his vocals to be fully appreciated.

Mr Clark said he was particularly impressed by the  young performers. 

“A lot of planning a lot of time and effort went into making it happen and you could tell the contestants were all very well prepared, I was happy to be a part of it,” Mr Clark said. 

“Everyone was great. I was very surprised by the young man on the piano, Lloyd Baker. I also enjoyed Brodie’s performance.”

Like many of the young performers, Mr Clark started his singing career at a young age. 

He said directing their interests early on will encourage strong development. 

“It starts at a young age. It’s not just singing dancing or acting; if you have a passion anything at a young age, that’s the time to explore it. 

“Eventually when that bug bites the passion to do something, you want to do that when you’re young enough to explore.” 

Act one saw Coco Malcolm and Ella Holland perform a dance they had worked on for nearly 12 months and they did a great job.

Act two had Katie Bennett and Alexandra Randall perform Mercy by Duffy, with Katie on vocals and Alex playing the recently tuned piano. 

Kimberley Ryan took to the stage for act three and smashed it with her solo from the Frozen Soundtrack.

Katie Bennett again graced the stage this time with a guitar to play her Interpretation of Wagon Wheel by Darrius Rucker

Barb Bell was invited onto the stage to present the Painting and Drawing awards and give some comments about her decisions as the judge of the artwork in her role as Warracknabeal Arts Council Member.  

With over 20 entries this category is growing in popularity.


First Jess Magee Hopetoun; second Jess Magee Hopetoun; third Seth Callaby Murtoa

Lloyd Baker as Act five then played a lively piece on the piano which the crowd really appreciated called Strutting It around’

Act six Hannah Grace sung her heart out and was warmly acknowledged by the audience.

Act seven Isabella Orszulak danced beautifully and received a lot of support for her efforts.

Warracknabeal Herald Editor David Ward was invited to the stage to present the photographs he judged.  

There were around 40 entrants;  Mr Ward went through his comments about why he ranked the photographs the way he did.

First Jacey Ferguson Hopetoun; second Delta Wardle Brim; third Charlie Baker Murtoa.

Ben Clark performed some more songs much to the audience’s delight.

Films from this year Endoreic Short Film Festival were then shown on the screen, celebrating some of the other fine cultural work that young people produce in our Shire.  The short Film workshops run during February and March across the region and are free to participate in.  Keep an eye out for next years workshops to be advertised.

Act eight Kiara Appleyard did her first live piano performance and did a great job.   

Act nine and Keetah Orszulak danced with the crowd getting behind her every move.

Rapper Kai Hoye smashed out a great rap ballad by Hamilton at act 10 which the audience enjoyed.    Brodie  Oliver did a fantastic job with Ten Dog Road by Jeff Gibson at Act 11.

Keedie    Wardle was a show stopper with her tap routine rounding out the entrants.

Ben Clark then amazed the audience with five more songs as the judges votes were tallied. 

In a close vote performance category winners were:

First Keedie Wardle from Brim; second Lloyd Baker from Murtoa, third Katie Bennett Birchip and fourth was tied between Brodie Oliver and Coco and Ella.

Mayor Massey presented the winners with certificates and vouchers, before thanking and presenting all the performers with certificates for entering.

Mayor Massey thanked Ben Clark for his performances, before congratulating the young people from the shire who worked hard behind the scenes to make the event happen. 

He also acknowledged the great work from Vornehm Audio Visual and Hectix with the sound system.  He also thanked the judges and Rotaract for cooking the barbecue.

He reiterated the excellent job the youth of the shire do with events like YHT. 

The event is run by young people for other young people with the committee organising the event having the opportunities to manage the day, budget, MC, interview and help with sound and lighting as well as videoing. 

Warracknabeal Town Hall Committee also supported the event.