The opportunity to take Australia’s premier busking festival to the world is music to the ears of Cindy and Joel Jensen. The brother sister duo behind the Gold Coast’s highly successful ‘Buskers by the Creek’ have always held a dream for developing the festival into a truly international event and thanks to the support of the Major Events Team of Sunshine Coast Council, that dream is set to become a reality. Maya Gurry, Chair of Sunshine Coast Events Board said the Board were thrilled that event organisers Cindy and Joel believed the Sunshine Coast offered the best opportunities to grow their event beyond its current attendance numbers. “With an abundance of Sunshine Coast busking talent to showcase, this event has potential for international growth, and would bring new commercial opportunities and visitation for the region in a traditionally quiet tourism period,” Ms Gurry said. “This is a great addition to the cultural calendar thanks to Sunshine Coast Council support through the Major Events sponsorship program”. It is a classic case of the Gold Coast’s loss being the Sunshine Coast’s gain, with Australia’s largest busking festival moving to Lake Kawana, Bokarina to become Buskers By The Lake on 31st October to 1 st November this year. Attracting the cream of Australian busking talent, the multi award winning event had been previously held on the banks of Currumbin Creek since 2014. In that time, the family friendly festival’s reputation grew steadily, along with the crowds, with Ms Jensen receiving hundreds of applications from domestic and overseas buskers to be part of the main two day event. “Last year we had more than 300 local and international performers covering a wide and varied range of acts from music to dance, comedy to theater and contortion to unicycling and it drew crowds in excess of 20,000,” Ms Jensen said. “But after six hugely successful years, multi award wins and a growing reputation as being one of the world’s best busking events, we’ve packed up and moved to a home that’s embraced our craziness, boldness, uniqueness and willingness to grow on an international scale in 2020 and beyond.” “We could not have been more overwhelmed by the enthusiasm shown for the event by Sunshine Coast Council and Visit Sunshine Coast. It was a very easy decision to move the festival, especially with the opportunity to see it grow as we’d always envisioned.” The festival will be a major economic driver for the Sunshine Coast in October, with its close proximity to Brisbane and the access to the Sunshine Coast airport. “Our fans are constantly getting in touch wanting to know when and where it will be this year and they have given commitments to come to the Sunshine Coast to experience their favourite festival in its’ brand new location.” Joel Jensen said. “Applications are now open via our website and we are looking forward to unearthing a whole new role call of local talent to add to the program and having the opportunity to bring new and exciting acts to Queensland to establish the Sunshine Coast as Australia’s busking capital.” Visit Sunshine Coast CEO Simon Latchford welcomed the new international busking festival to the region. “We are excited to see the new music and cultural event, Buskers by the Lake, to be held on the Sunshine Coast. It demonstrates we are more than just lycra sporting events and showcases the diversity of our events calendar,” Simon said. Because Buskers was created to be free to the public, Cindy and Joel rely heavily on sponsorship from the private and public sectors and welcome all like-minded businesses to get in touch to discuss partnership opportunities. Two of their biggest supporters, Ian and Michelle from NightQuarter, have been integral in enabling the event to continue and have jumped onboard as a major partner. The couple has also opened Malt Shovel Taphouse Sunshine Coast, which will also play host to a number of the festival’s side street events. “NightQuarter is all about bringing together the community and incubating the growth of the music industry. We can’t be more excited to be working with Cindy again and helping bring this fabulous festival to the Sunshine Coast!” Ms Christoe said. Buskers By the Lake will be held on the foreshore of Lake Kawana on 31st October – 1 st November and to keep with the festival’s unique theming, this year will see the parklands transformed into desert digs. Aside from hosting over 300 performers, there will also be a floating half pipe with BMX and skateboarding displays, buskers bazaars, an international menu, licensed areas and loads of surprises. World sensation, Tones and I took out the festival’s prestigious Battle of the Buskers back in 2018 and this year it will kick off the calendar of events on Friday 30th October at NightQuarter. A newly introduced Saturday night event has also been scheduled into the program, with “Freaks and Beats” showcasing world class side show performers and musical talent. Then to say farewell to the 2020 celebrations, the festival’s Heartlands bar will play host to the official closing party and it will be a send off equally mindblowing as the event program. For more information visit Buskers By The Lake is proudly supported by the Sunshine Coast Council and Visit Sunshine Coast and sponsored by Nightquarter, Graphic Design Australia, Malt Shovel Taphouse, Stone and Wood, Airlie Beach Festival of Music, Bluesfest Busking. LIN

Skye Leong
Author: Skye Leong

Creativity, Community, Culture