Sunday, 03 March 2024

Gawler Music, Arts, Poetry event

Rod and I are very pleased to join you for the opening of Gawler’s 2024 series of Original Music, Art & Poetry, as well as to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Gawler as an Adelaide Fringe destination.

We love supporting South Australian artists and organisations during the Fringe.

Indeed we are out most evenings during festival season, and have become what we refer to as “Fringe fit”!


Over the years I have visited Gawler a number of times in a personal capacity and have always found it to be a very welcoming community.

As Governor, I visited Xavier College last year and am looking forward to Trinity College’s Open Day in April.

I’m pleased to see how Gawler has embraced the Adelaide Fringe since events were first held here, 10 years ago.

Over the years it has been wonderful to see more and more locations outside the metropolitan area embrace the Fringe and host performances for their communities.

In 2024, the Town of Gawler is hosting 25 Fringe shows and events, including this one.

I thank you for coming along to support this event, and I hope you will support and enjoy other ones too.

This year also marks the fifth year of MAP – Music, Art and Poetry events, organised by Martin Johnson.

Martin is a recipient of a Medal in the Order of Australia, which I had the pleasure of presenting to him at Government House in 2022.

For MAP, Martin had a vision to provide opportunities for local musicians to perform their own original music, visual artists to display their work, and for poets to perform their own original writings to appreciative local audiences.

I congratulate him , together with his partner Cathy, on bringing this vision to life. It has proven very successful.

Since MAP’s inception, 16 bands and 16 artists have performed or displayed their art in a public setting, gaining exposure for their practice and giving the local community the opportunity to enjoy it.

160 people have publicly read their own original poems, both invited poets and open mike participants. Poems are now recorded ‘on-the-spot’ for broadcast by Salisbury-based community radio 5 PBA FM.

I was also pleased to learn that MAP reaches out to engage artists from other regions.

I know a group of Riverland poets recently travelled to Gawler to participate in a poetry reading to share their individual stories of the floods, engaging the local community in their experiences.

I congratulate all the artists, musicians and poets who are involved in today’s event.

I trust you are looking forward to exploring Martin’s self‑described (?) “quirky” watercolour paintings, depicting items he has seen on the Gawler footpaths; Sally Brock’s photographs under the theme “Diamonds in the Dust”, hearing music from the G-Force Band, and listening to poetry.

I thank the council for hosting this event and providing financial support to MAP, and I thank local businesses for their contributions too.

I wish you all a great event and a very enjoyable Fringe!

Coming events