Category Archives: Entertainment

Hearing Jaara Jaara country – an acoustic celebration of box-ironbark country – Sunday 3rd November


The premiere of a new radiophonic work heard in surround sound in the bush, Jaara Jaara Seasons, will take place in Fryerstown, central Victoria, on Sunday 3rd November.

Internationally renowned Sound Artist, Ros Bandt, has been immersed recording the sounds of box-ironbark over a 12 month period, with the kind permission of Uncle Brien Nelson, Jaara Jaara Elder.  Her radiophonic work will be spread through the bush and include sound recordings from underwater, in the air and the sounds of multi-cultural musicians.

Ros’s work aims to encourage deep listening to country and to honour those who have gone before.  “Every place is an acoustic space which comes into being through listening” says Ros.  “This habitat is at once a sound lab and poetic inspiration for soundscape composition and a public performance, which will be held at the site in a specially constructed temporary soniferous garden.  Nothing beats being in place for situational listening.”

Performers include Rick Nelson (Jaara Jaara voice), Kinja – Ron Murray (didgeridoo/stories) and Sarah James (violin/voice), Mary Doumany (harp/voice), Le Tuan Hung (dan tranh), Wang Zheng Ting (sheng), and Ros Bandt (tarhu, psaltery/slide whistles/recorders).

The setting is a Jaara Jaara place of 55 acres, with a checkered history of pastoralism, gold, hobby farm and native bush. Over the past 20 years it has been land for wildlife and left to regenerate, free of intrusion, with the result of regeneration of the box ironbark habitat.  It is a natural sound sanctuary.  There is no electricity and this project is being carried out with no impact on the land, using sustainable technologies.

Ros Bandt is one of Australia’s first pioneering sound artists. Her environmental sound art comprises sound installations, original musical instruments, sound sculptures, sound playgrounds, spatial music systems and live performances. She is a composer of site specific sounding artworks worldwide. She has been commissioned by international radio stations for her electro-acoustic sounding artworks in Europe, Asia and America. Her work in sound heritage and endangered sounds, and her online sound designs in public space in Australia 2000-7, has earned her the Australian national award for sound heritage by the National Film and Sound Archive in 2012, The Fanny Cochrane Smith Award, and in 2013 she has been shortlisted for the Melbourne Prize Outstanding Musician’s award.  Her first vinyl was listed in this year’s national registry of Australian Sound by the National Film and Sound Archive.  Ros has a PhD in musicology from Monash University and is honorary fellow in the School of History and Philosophical Studies at Melbourne University.

To attend this free public event, meet at the Fryerstown School, 5 Camp Street, by 3:30pm to walk to the bush site for a 4:00 pm start.  The performance is 50 minutes duration and participants may bring a campstool if needed. No smoking or phones are permitted on site. Refreshments and CDs will be available for purchase at the Fryerstown School.   

More information about this unique event can be found at

May, media and mmmmmm.

During the month of May there have been numerous inspections of the facilities and several events – with more on the horizon.  “We used to bring the kids here on school camp back in the ‘80s” reminisced a former teacher from Lockwood Primary School.  We have had health and wellbeing practitioners visit – with talk of a regular one day a month event for people to rejuvenate their mind and body.  The Growing Abundance team inspected the facilities and have scheduled an olive processing workshop at the school on Saturday 8th June.

017Tim Todhunter, the leader of the school restoration project, celebrated a ‘significant’ birthday with family and friends at the school during May.  Attendees were delighted with a performance by the local Welsh Male Choir, followed by a display of dancing marionette puppets, folk music and storytelling by Marcus and Carolyn of Hunkydory Puppets.

The Mount Alexander Heritage Advisory Committee held a gathering at the school after a tour of historic sites around Fryerstown and Vaughan, and discussed the school restoration over a bowl of hearty soup by the crackling fire.

There was a great turn out to an Emergency Services community event held on the evening of Friday 24 May, with demonstrations by the various service organisations outside, followed by a delicious meal inside.  During the last week the school has been used for a sewing workshop.

The Fryerstown School has been featured in the Castlemaine Mail, the Midland Express and is also in the current Chewton Chat.

We are currently working on the programming of the ‘Winter Warmers’ community event to be held in the middle of June.  It will be a fantastic night where community members and friends can come together for delicious food (mmmmm), wonderful entertainment and warm conversation.

If you would like to arrange an inspection of the school, discuss an event, or hire the beautiful gallery space, phone Denise Button on 0413 563404, email or visit .