Birregurra Festival Q&A with Andrew Forssman

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Birregurra Festival Q&A with Andrew Forssman

With the Birregurra Weekend Festival and Art Show only a stone’s throw away, we pounced on the opportunity to have a chat with the festival’s main man, Andrew Forssman. So grab yourself a bite to eat and come take a walk with us.
Hi Andrew, thanks for taking the time to chat with Forte. How are you and what are you up to at the moment?
I am great thanks! I’m currently balancing my work at my day job at Surf Coast Secondary College with the planning for the festival, and of course plenty of family time. Thankfully most of the hard work is done for the festival. The committee has been meeting fortnightly to finalise the details and get ready for the 11th & 12th Oct. It’s coming together nicely.
The Birregurra Festival is in its 15th year. What is it about the festival that has it sticking around?
The festival is for the community. We are not-for-profit, with all money raised going back into the local community. The festival is the major source of fundraising for local community groups, so the success of the festival is in the best interest of all the community. Plus, I don’t think I would be too far off saying that just about everyone that comes to the festival has a really great time. So they come back, which is awesome!
Obviously there’s a variety of things to attract the public (art, music etc.). What do you think is the main draw card?
This year we have really taken a big step forward with regards to live music. We will be running two stages on both days of the festival. Without doubt the big draw card will be our headliners, the Pierce Brothers. These guys have blown up big time in the last six months. Since the release of their EP (The Night Tree), they have played a string of sold-out shows in Australia, not to mention the huge show they did at Lowlands Festival in the Netherlands. Pierce Brothers play 1:30 p.m. Saturday 11th on the Main Stage.
You’ve also got a lot of activities for children. Is that an important factor for your festival to have?
For sure! It really is a family festival. The local primary and pre-schools are heavily involved in the festival. This year we will have a couple of hundred students from local primary schools performing as part of the huge Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Marsh Choir.
I also wanted to ensure that there was a major attraction for kids in the form of live music. This year we have Little Feet Music performing on the Sunday morning. This is a must for those with young children!
A lot of the acts performing are local. Is that an important thing for you?
Yes, it certainly is. The festival offers visitors a really good chance to see some of the great talent that we have in the local area. I think that this year we have a really nice mix of local talent from the Colac region, alongside performers from the Surf Coast, Geelong and Melbourne.
If someone was trying to decide whether or not to come, what would you say to convince them?
If you’ve been before, this year will be bigger and better than ever, so you know it’s going to be great! If you’ve never been, do yourself a favour. Come and enjoy world-class bands, amazing local produce/beers/wines, check out the fantastic art show and entertain the kids with a heap of great activities. Best of all is that your wallet won’t feel the pinch!
What’s the best thing you’ve heard someone say of the festival?
We get lots of great feedback from visitors to the festival. I think that people generally appreciate the diversity of the festival and what it offers for the whole family.
Thanks again for taking the time to chat with us. Is there anything you’d like to add before we finish up?
No worries! Maybe just give our Facebook page a ‘like’ and follow us on Twitter to get all the details!
When&Where: Birregurra – October 11-12