TOWNSVILLE CULTURAL FESTIVAL - UNITY IN DIVERSITY
Plans for our 25th Anniversary Celebrations
The Townsville Intercultural Centre has plans to stage a grand commemorative celebration, working in collaboration with over 250 groups including: school communities, cultural and religious groups, community art workers and musicians, scouts, sporting and social clubs, local businesses and government agencies.
The historical event will also involve other regional communities from the Tablelands to Rockhampton, and include national celebrities such as Baker Boy, and international cultural performers from PNG, Fiji, the Cook Islands, Indonesia, Thailand, Tajikistan, Spain, Brazil, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, China and Japan.
During the lead up to the festival, our office will support a number of local schools to engage in school-based activities addressing the theme of the event: "Unity In Diversity". These activities will include creating inspirational songs about peace, harmony and unity; creating mural art on large ply-board panels, and organising interschool debates based on the theme of the event. The activities will culminate in an opportunity to be involved in the festival itself.
Local community radios have committed to taking a significant part in promoting the content of the festival program.
In addition, a number of local artists have already joined forces to organise an art exhibition as a fundraiser for the festival, which will ultimately depend financially on sponsorships, support from local businesses, stallholder fees and entry tickets.
Following is a list of some of the highlights the community can expect at the 25th anniversary Townsville Cultural Fest (TCFest25) as well as sponsorship opportunities:
Over one hundred community, business, government and educational bodies will join the Festival Carnival on (10th August) with a brilliant array of decorated vehicles. The Carnival will travel from Harmony Park (cnr Warburton and McKinley Sts, North Ward) to James Cook University.
Festival passports will be issued to all long-term supporters and participants of the festival in honour of their commitment. The passports will be presented during the Official Dinner.
Indigenous Visual Art Expo
The TCFest25 will host an impressive art exhibition involving all local and regional Indigenous artists.
Official Opening Ceremony
The official opening ceremony will take place on Friday 16th August. It will involve local Indigenous Elders, community stakeholders, event sponsors and the festival ambassadors. The opening ceremony will be hosted by a TV celebrity and will include an Aboriginal smoking ceremony.
At the centre of the festival sits an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander village, complete with Indigenous art, food, storytelling and live music. Spectators will be able to sit around the campfire listening to the storytellers, and immersing themselves in the Dreamtime.
The festival organisers have approached a variety of Australian and international celebrities to support the festival on stage as a host/ hostess, presenter or performer.
At least three major headline acts will be locked in for each evening of the festival. These acts will be announced in March 2019 during the Official Dinner.
Multi-faith Prayer and Pigeon Release for Peace
On Sunday morning (18th August), a community reflection and multi-faith prayer session will take place in the middle of the global village. At the end of this moving ceremony, participants will release hundreds of pigeons as a symbol of peace and harmony for the world.
International Cultural Performers
The festival team has approached a number of foreign embassies in Canberra, as well as significant cultural groups in Melbourne and Sydney, to sponsor an international cultural performing group to add flavour and diversity to the event.
5 kilometres of Himalayan-style prayer flags will mark the festival perimeters. From a distance, in reflection of the festival lights, they will make a stunning display of colour, diversity and harmony
TCFest25 Idol Competition
On Saturday evening (17th August), all festival performers will be invited to join in the Idol Competition. Winners will be decided by popular vote, and audience members will be encouraged to use their smart phones to do this, while enjoying the spectacular array of performances.
Global Village Best-decorated Market Stall Competition
A significant prize will be awarded to the best decorated Global Village market stall. The winner will be selected through a community voting system and the prize awarded during the official closing ceremony.
High School Captains Speech Competition
All local high school Captains will be invited on stage to share a 250 word speech on Friday morning (16th August) . The topic will be “Multiculturalism / Australian Cultural Identity”. The audience will include community leaders, senior citizens, school communities and Festival Ambassadors. A sit-down lunch will follow the ceremony in the honour of Townsville’s Senior Citizens.
Children’s Art Activity
A large, blank model of the earth (2.5 meters in diameter) will be placed in free spinning access in the middle of the Global Village. Under the supervision of a local artist, all the festival children will be encouraged to participate in painting the mother earth and naming her beautiful forests and places. The finished artwork will be placed on a frame with wheels and paraded around the festival prior to the official closing ceremony.
Koala Mascot Sculpture
Over the last five years, and as part of the lead up to our 25th anniversary, the festival has created a range of giant sculptures, art features and monuments. These include: Mother Earth, Slim Dusty, Jonathan Thurston, Ned Kelly, the early settlers "Horse Wagon", Pacific Island Totems, the Aboriginal Elder King Bundawal, and more. The sculptures (up to 4 metres high) are mounted on trailers and ceremoniously paraded through the streets of Townsville to the festival each year. For the 25th anniversary, the festival will create a giant Koala as its mascot. This beautiful native animal is a unifying force for all of us who call Australia home, yet it is on its way to extinction within our lifetime. The Koala mascot will serve as a sobering reminder about our diminishing ecology and natural environment.
Unity In Diversity National Conference, Brisbane 25 – 26 July 2019
Auditorium - Queensland State Library
In July 2019, an international conference will be held in Brisbane, addressing the issues central to the core mission of the Townsville Cultural Fest. The Unity In Diversity International Conference will bring together academics, community service practitioners, researchers and government agencies to share knowledge, cooperate and network towards the further development of Australia’s multicultural policy framework.
The festival t-shirt will be available from March 2019. Major sponsors will be rewarded with their logo proudly displayed on these beautifully designed and produced commemorative shirts.
A fundraising art exhibition will be held in Brisbane in April 2019. Townsville artists and festival supporters will contribute their work to help promote the festival.
A festival postcard will be circulated nationally, featuring the highlights of the event and promoting the event’s major sponsors.
A beautifully designed festival program will be published and distributed widely. It will include details of all festival events, activities, participants, stalls and sponsors.
Social Media Campaign
With the support of over 10,000 Facebook followers, festival organisers will conduct a targeted and sustained social media campaign, providing updates on the development of the festival throughout the year.