There was no shortage of outstanding talent on show at Wahluu- Mount Panorama last weekend as audiences flocked to this year’s Inland Sea of Sound festival.
Across two action-packed days, attendees were treated to cultural food, local brews and some of the best examples of local, national and international talent gracing the realm of music.
Headlining the festival were prominent Australian acts Deborah Conway and The Cat Empire, both whom dazzled audience with powerhouse sets.
Deborah Conway, along with husband and regular collaborator Willy Zygier, closed Friday night’s roster of entertainment with a stunning set that highlighted the pair’s three-decade long relationship with music.
Meanwhile, The Cat Empire brought the party to them with their superb Saturday slot, leading crowd singalongs to notable hits such as ‘Two Shoes,’ ‘Sol Y Sombra' and ‘How to Explain.’
The festival also saw a large host of local acts take to the stage for a number of memorable performances, showcasing the sublime range of talent the Central West has to offer.
Among those featured local acts was Gabbi Bolt who, fresh from the release of her debut EP Grey Into Blue, brought her RnB and funk infused pop to the main stage along with her dynamic band.
“I got to enjoy a real professional stage with my band, which was incredible for us,” Ms Bolt said.
“We don’t get the chance to perform together often, so we had a lot of fun performing on that stage and it didn’t feel like work at all.”
Commenting on the overall atmosphere of the festival, Ms Bolt felt that there was a significant emphasis on community involvement this year.
“It was amazing to see everyone having a really relaxed and enjoyable time,” she said.
“The layout of the festival this year was awesome.”
There are so few festivals like this one.Gabbi Bolt
Ms Bolt was part of an immensely diverse contingent of local acts that included Smith & Jones, The Safety of Life at Sea, Andy Nelson, Amy Viola, Chloe and Jason Roweth and The Mats.
The Inland Sea of Sound festival celebrated its eighth staging this year, and the Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre [BMEC] initiative has been pivotal in fostering local talent as well as bringing some well-known Australian and international acts to the region.
Although the festival is generally well-received year after year, there is always room for improvement, and Ms Bolt says that the key is selling the festival’s unique atmosphere to wider audiences.
“There are so few festivals like this one,” she said.
“It’s really important that the community continues to get behind this festival and that we broaden its appeal to places outside the Central West by letting them know how amazing this festival really is.”