Ocean Grove is getting its own acoustic music festival this April – and it’s completely free

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Ocean Grove is getting its own acoustic music festival this April – and it’s completely free

Isabella Kahlife

Ocean Grove is set to break into the live music game with the announcement of the inaugural Ocean Grove Acoustic Festival. 

In awesome news for the Bellarine Peninsula, Ocean Grove are set to become a music hub this April, with the brand-new free Ocean Grove Acoustic Festival.

The all-new one-day festival will be taking over Ocean Grove and its big surf backdrop on Saturday, April 9 as part of the City of Greater Geelong’s Surround Sound series running through March and April.

Set to be Australia’s first acoustic music festival, The Pavilion’s superb concert stage will bring remarkable acoustic talent from across the region including Famous Will Band, Isabella Khalife, Peter Paul and Marion, and fellow strummers Finnigan August, The Fillmores and Von Robertsons.

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This stellar cast of our region’s most loved players will prove how versatile the acoustic guitar can be.

First, there’s Famous Will. A local artist who is now a national favourite, Will Gardiner quit his job and sold everything to record his debut album and tour the country. Picked up by Triple J and showcased around the nation, Famous Will has the skill to take us back to the time when all music had meaning. With haunting songs like ‘The Story’ and that folky/country feel, Famous Will and his band will have you mesmerised with his storytelling songwriting style.

Isabella Khalife is another favourite on the lineup, set to captivate audiences with sweet-sounding vocals and impresses with her multi-instrumental ability. A master melody shaper, she uses her skill to tell emotion-filled stories through her acoustic pop originals with lyrics that are honest and real. She takes to the stage with her acoustic guitar and loop pedal. Her ability to both bring a full room to silence, listen to her delicate yet powerful voice, or fill up the space entirely with vocal and instrumental loops, is something quite unique.

Local legends The Fillmores will also serenade audiences in OG, playing their brand of sincere and catchy rock and roll taking cues from greats such as The Go-Betweens, Talking Heads and The Clean alongside modern acts such as The Ocean Party, Kurt Vile and Courtney Barnett. Hailing from Melbourne/Naarm and Apollo Bay (Gadabanud/Katabanut Country) the project began as a creative outlet for brothers Jack and Seamus Fillmore and has slowly evolved into a six piece group featuring jangling guitars, soaring violin and keys, and anthemic group vocals. The last few years have seen The Fillmores release a handful of singles and EP’s, their latest release ‘Moonsurfing EP’ (a collection of bedroom recordings and song sketches recorded through isolation) saw the band creating its most distinct and diverse music yet.

Surf Coast artist Finnigan August will deliver the sweet sound of folk/blues which is reinforced through his solid jazz guitar chops, renowned folk quartet Peter Paul and Marion will perform original Peter Paul and Mary and Seekers songs, while The Von Robertsons are a local powerhouse of a family band who will grab your attention from the get-go with their 70’s inspired sounds. This Ocean Grove family band – with award-winning artist, Andrea Robertson on vocals and guitar, David Robertsonon drums (endorsed by Toca Percussion), award-winning Heath Robertson on vocals and guitar and rising talent Carly Robertson on vocals and bass – have something truly magical going on, and they are making their mark on the music scene, collectively as well as individually.

“Our region has some of the finest artists in the nation and we’ve been waiting a long time to see them perform,” says Artistic Director Jon Mamonski.

“The Pavilion in Ocean Grove Park is a first-class concert stage and a perfect setting for this free concert.”

This inaugural festival is a reminder of the incredible level of detail and trailblazing spirit acoustic artists bring to the local music scene, spanning countless genres of music, including folk, pop, country and hard and soft rock.

Grab a rug and pack a picnic and be sure to head down early for a prime spot on the grass.

The festival kicks off from 4pm on Saturday, April 9 2022 at The Pavilion in the spectacular Ocean Grove Park. You can find out more here