THE opportunity to share the limelight, and sometimes the stage, with some of Australia's biggest names in country was too good to pass up for these young Bathurst musicians.
They were among 700 performers who entertained 300,000 music lovers at this year's Tamworth Country Music Festival (TCMF).
Young performers from the Bathurst Academy of Music (BAM) busked on the street while others performed or competed on stage.
"It's nerve-wracking, but when you're on the stage it's not too bad," Izzy Cobcroft, 15, said.
"You learn a lot from others and what they do and you learn about how to compete."
Singer, songwriter and guitarist Belle Whitwell, 16, might be familiar with stages around Bathurst, but said the TCMF takes her out of her comfort zone.
"It's incredibly inspiring and it's amazing to be around such talent and the professional people always step back and help out the rising talent," she said.
"I got to play with Amber Lawrence and she was pretty cool."
Tameka Kennedy not only performed at the TCMF official opening on the main stage, she also jammed with Kasey Chambers.
BAM tutor Mickey Pye was asked to play his instrumental song Bridle Track at the opening of the Golden Guitar awards.
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