Jazz festival may land big names

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A couple of big names may be part of next year’s Harbour St Jazz Festival.
Preparations for the popular event were in full swing and several local bands and others from outside the district had already confirmed, Harbour St Jazz Festival co-ordinator Julie Barclay said.
The programme for the March event was coming together well, she said.
“It’s going really good. We’ve pretty much got our bands sorted and we’re doing a couple of fundraisers before it, so it’s going well at the moment.”
“Eight or nine” bands would perform, as well as individual musicians.
She was also hopeful of attracting a couple of well-known musicians to the festival.
“We’ve had talks with Midge Marsden _ at this stage it’s not confirmed but he is doing a final tour of New Zealand and he’s trying to work in the jazz festival on the Sunday night … It’s a definite possibility.”
Marsden, a blues and R&B guitarist and singer, has plied his craft for four decades.
She had also been in contact with musician Peter Urlich about the possibility of his performing in Oamaru.
“Whether he does next year, I’m not 100% sure, but if we can work it, we will. A couple of big-name people would be awesome.”
Edwina Thorne, known as New Zealand’s “trumpet diva”, is also set to perform.
The talent show would return after it proved popular earlier this year, Mrs Barclay said.
However, there was unlikely to be a cabaret night on the Sunday.
“We want to have a really big night rather than a cabaret as such.”
Meanwhile, the incorporated society is in need of some new committee members and volunteers.
Alan and Maxine Rakiraki and Faye Ormandy recently stood down from their roles on the committee after five years of “just great” service, Mrs Barclay said.
“Three or four” committee members and some keen volunteers were required to help run the festival.
“It’s volunteers we need to help out with certain stuff, especially on the weekend. It can become quite overwhelming sometimes without volunteers.”
Harbour St Jazz had between 15 and 20 members, a number she hoped would increase in the months before next year’s festival, Mrs Barclay said.┬áIts annual meeting is on July 18, and the public are welcome.┬áNext year’s festival takes place between March 17 and 19.