Battle of the Bands to return to region

BETTER THAN EVER: Local event organiser and radio presenter, Bronte Ellard has made the exciting announcement that Battle of the Bands will return in 2024. Picture: MELANIE RILEY.

Melanie Riley

GET ready to be blown away as the Battle of the Bands returns to Mount Gambier/Berrin later this year.

Events organiser and radio presenter Bronte Ellard was excited to announce recently that after a lot of hard work, she, along with other local musicians, was bringing the popular music event back to the Limestone Coast.

Ms Ellard recently started the Facebook page ‘Gigs And Music Connect Mount Gambier’ to create a space where local talent could network, communicate and advertise all things music and performance.

“It’s about building that community back up because there are a lot of musicians here, they just need to talk and be involved,” she said.

“There is so much talent here, once everyone starts talking and organising events again, we generally all come together, and really incredible things can happen.”

Ms Ellard has been involved in the local music scene for more than a decade and has been involved in organising and hosting events, as well as having a regular segment on community radio station 5GTR FM.

She is passionate about the local music scene, and after community consultation via the Facebook page, she realised a Battle of the Bands was in demand for the region.

Ms Ellard said she hoped the event would breathe some life back into the local music scene, and help promote new and upcoming artists.

“I’ve previously done three Battle of the Bands, and each winner was entirely different,” she said.

“We had Kane Stuckey one year with Obsidian’s Curse, which are quite heavy, then there was a really beautiful band called Since Tuesday, who are quite indie.

“I think one of my favourite things is we can really discover the next big thing, and it doesn’t matter what genre or what style, there is just so much here.

“It might just be the push artists need to give it a go.”

Ms Ellard said community involvement and backing in previous years had been overwhelming, and she hoped this year’s event would be no exception.

“Not only are these events a lot of fun, but you are supporting your family, your friends, or people in your local community,” she said.

“By people getting involved and showing their support, there will be more opportunities to hold a lot more of these kinds of events.”

Applications for the Battle of the Bands will be open soon, and Ms Ellard said she hoped to be able to create a seamless application process.

“The big difference between now and a few years ago when I last organised the Battle of the Bands, is that things have gone very digital,” she said.

“I am hoping to open it up to an easy online form.”

There is no specific criteria for artists, and Ms Ellard said she wanted the event to be able to showcase the broad range of talent of the Limestone Coast.

“We want to see solo artists, we want to see hip-hop artists, we want to see jazz kids, we want this to be for everyone,” she said.

Ms Ellard is now in the process of locking in details for the event, including securing the location and said support for funding was always much-needed for non-for-profit events.

“In previous years, I’ve self-funded through fundraisers and sometimes out of my own pocket,” she said.

“You just make it work.

“I’m very lucky in the way that this town is very generous, so fingers crossed we can find some local businesses willing to support this.”

She encouraged the community to follow the Facebook page for updates, and invited anybody wishing to sponsor, donate or volunteer time to reach out.