Sacred Heart Mission Column

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Musicians, comedians and the community come together for the Heart of St Kilda Concert

With the seventh Heart of St Kilda Concert this month (Wednesday 13th August), it’s fitting to reflect on what makes this one night so special. The gala-type event sees some of Australia’s best musicians and comedians getting together at St Kilda’s Palais Theatre to raise money for Sacred Heart Mission, and use their profiles to raise awareness about homelessness and poverty in our community.

Here’s a sample of what some audience members had to say as they had a drink in the foyer of the Palais during intermission last year: “The community atmosphere is brilliant,” “Good line up and audience participation,” “The vibe was so warm and the line-up was fantastic,” and “Awesome. Not only for some of the big names that the concert draws together, it was also a way of seeing artists who we hadn’t heard of before and knowing that we were all supporting a worthy cause gave both the artists and audience a sense of unity”.

Indeed, that “warm vibe,” “sense of unity” and “community atmosphere” is really what it’s all about. It’s about getting together with a friend or two, revelling in the music of some our most talented musicians and sharing a belly laugh over the antics of some of our finest comedians.

Over the past seven years, Sacred Heart Mission has (been blessed to) attracted some of the best of the Australian music scene. There’s always a great mix of luminaries and rising stars, and this year is no exception.

Performing on the night are: Tim Rogers, Vika and Linda Bull, The Basics (featuring Wally De Backer – aka Gotye), Phil Ceberano, Colleen Hewett, Dick Diver, Ashley Naylor, Melbourne Ska Orchestra, Uncle Jack Charles, Julia Morris, Charlie Pickering, Tripod, Elliot Goblet, Dean Atkinson, Tegan Higginbotham and Greg Champion. Billy Miller (ex Ferrets) and Rebecca Barnard (ex Rebecca’s Empire) will be there too, along with about 100 of their best friends who form the Caravan Choir (the choir is made of everyday people who love music and get together regularly in Oakleigh for a singalong). Hosting the evening for the seventh year is MC Brian Nankervis.

We asked some of the performers a few questions about this year’s concert.

1. Why are you giving your talents and time to Sacred Heart Mission’s Heart of St Kilda Concert?

The Basics: As a touring band we’ve often been offered shelter and food from many generous people, so by supporting Sacred Heart Mission’s work we hope to indirectly do the same thing for vulnerable people in our local community.

Dick Diver: Because nearly everyone who has experienced homelessness has been exposed to scary and awful situations that nobody should have to face.

Elliot Goblet: Because this one of the great causes in the history of the known universe.

2. What’s the best thing about being involved in a fundraising concert with so many big names from Australia’s entertainment industry?

Ashley Naylor: The best thing is the variety of acts all coming together in the spirit of the event. Artists from different corners of the music and comedy worlds share the stage like an old-fashioned variety show.

3. How do you think a concert such as this can highlight the work of the Mission and the issue of homelessness in our community?

Ashley Naylor: A concert like the Heart of St Kilda Concert is becoming a tradition and I believe the audience willingly attend the concert in the spirit with which the performers make their contribution. Homelessness and poverty are chronic social problems and the levity of comedy and music is a sweet counterpoint to the seriousness of the issues the Mission tackles. Artists have the ability to shed light on social issues for some fans who may not be aware of the Mission and the work it does.

The Basics: Gatherings of this magnitude are key prompts for compassionate Melburnians to come together and amplify their support of those most in need in the community.

4. What can the audience expect from you on the night?

Rebecca Barnard (and Billy Miller): It’s a surprise but I can tell you there will be 100 people on stage!

Dick Diver: Love

5. Who are you most looking forward to seeing on the night and why?

Elliot Goblet: Can’t pick any one act but looking forward to enjoying the whole night… and going internally berserk.

The Heart of St Kilda concert helps raise funds for Sacred Heart Mission’s meals program which serves about 400 breakfasts and lunches every day of the year to people experiencing homelessness.

We’d love to see you there! Heart of St Kilda Concert, Wednesday 13th August at the Palais Theatre. Tickets are on sale now at Ticketmaster or phone 136 100. To get to the Palais Theatre take trams 16 or 96 straight to the door, or check the Palais website for disabled parking and other transport options

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