ABILITY FEST 2019
FUN FACT On, June 10th and 11th, 1967 — one week before the Monterey Pop Festival and two years before Woodstock — tens of thousands of Bay Area music fans converged on the Sydney B. Cushing Memorial Amphitheatre on Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California, for the first U.S. rock festival.
FUN FACT The first music festival in Australia was the Sunbury Pop Festival or Sunbury Rock Festival was an annual Australian rock music festival held on a 620-acre (2.5 km2) private farm between Sunbury and Diggers Rest, Victoria, which was staged on the Australia Day (26th January) long weekend from 1972 to 1975.
When I think of concerts I think of Glastonbury, and people deep trenched in muddy fields, praying that the $16.99 tent that they bought the day before doesn’t get broken into.
I have never ever wanted to attend any concerts. I hate crowds, loud noises, veggie burgers, hippies, smoking, random people yelling out single words and then looking around the gathered crowd to see if anyone else is yelling out the same phrase or word while they chug some warm beer from a plastic glass as they sit on the shoulders of their boyfriend/friend/partner who really wants to throw them off cos there shoulder is in immense pain but manages to keep tight lipped until the end of the set by their favourite band.
Once home the bad shoulder (which will now be called how guilty can I make you feel shoulder) rubs itself together because they can foresee a week of lying on the couch, drugged up by pain killers making the person who sat on there shoulders regret even suggesting it in the first place.
Even going to a concert as a disabled person doesn’t exactly make me want to reach for the telephone to wait over 45 minutes to book a ticket to see whoever is playing.
And in recent years people with disabilities haven’t had the best track record when it comes to attending and being part of a concert.
Take then the recent story of Marlena Katene, a 27-year-old freelance music journalist from Brisbane who went to see Eminem recently paying for the VIP package experience.
Here then is what happened to her (https://www.news.com.au/entertainment/music/tours/disabled-woman-accuses-staff-at-brisbane-eminem-concert-of-segregation/news-story/a7dadf1a6bda378b16c1ad33c2ca7689)
But what if I told you that there was a festival especially organised for disabled people by a disabled person.
Dylan Alcott the Australian Paralympian has come to our rescue.
But what is Ability Fest I hear you ask well here’s an explanation
“Ability Fest makes sure that people living with disabilities can have the same access to live music as able-bodied people. In fact, 100% of all ticket proceeds are going to the Dylan Alcott foundation, which aims to help young Australians living with disabilities.
Last year, the festival’s first iteration managed to raise just shy of $200,000.
But what if your Autistic Nick and you need to find somewhere to go for some time out or to take a sensory break?
Well Dylan has you covered for that as well as providing noise cancelling headphones so that you can listen to the music without all the other noise distractions.
I’ll let the man himself explain things in the two videos below
you can also check out his foundation here
If you wish to donate to this year’s event, click here https://dylanalcottfoundation.com.au/donation/
Here is a list of this year’s performers
Hot Dub Time Machine
Northeast Party House
Total Giovanni DJs
To buy tickets click here (https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/ability-fest-2019-tickets-57959868527
This is the second year that Dylan is running this event. And I think it’s a great that it is an inclusive event taking into consideration the wide range of disabilities that people have as well as the difficulties that come along with attending a concert.
It’s a step that I would like to see other states other than Victoria where this event is being held contacting his foundation and collaborating with him to make it a state-wide event.
Why restrict it to just Melbourne?
Disabled people live outside of Melbourne and I’m sure would love to be given an opportunity to attend such an event.
Clearly there is an audience for it given that it’s in its second year.
Until then if you can get to Coburg Velodrome, 30 Charles Street
Coburg North, VIC 3058 on Sunday the 7th April 2019 between 12:00 pm – 10:00 pm I hope you have a great time.
I personally will be hoping that they’ll televise this event and I can watch it from my lounge room.
Carry on the Conversation
Will you be attending this concert?
Would you attend an all-inclusive disability concert?
Let me know in the comments below
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Thank you for reading and I will see you next time for more thoughts from across the spectrum.