Tasmania's Got Talent

Cooee Cabaret travels to Tasmania
 Beth Taylor

When Cooee Cabaret travels around Australia, we include two local acts from the each place we visit. It’s a great way to reflect the vibe of a town and meet the locals. We have had some wonderful performers on past tours, such as Shane Howard performing 'Solid Rock’ in Warrnambool, Alex Hood performing his children’s classic Brumby Jack in Coffs Harbour, Bernie Carson performing her song George in Boonah, and Coffs Harbour’s Sultrio who performed Love is in the Air.

Tasmania has more treats in store for us – with eight acts across Hobart, Launceston, Devonport and Burnie.

They’re a diverse bunch, performing everything from spoken word poetry to a violin mash-up of Waltzing Matilda, Down Under and Yarra River Blues. Allow me to whet your appetite with a profile of a few of the performers.
The Geale Brothers. Courtesy of James Geale

The Geale Brothers from Launceston (pictured), are two brothers James (25 years old), Hamish (19 years old) and their 16 year old sister Victoria – who is happy to be included as an honourary brother. James Geale says that the Launceston music scene is a lively one. The three siblings, and their other brother Alexander, play live with the band, or one of their many side projects, every weekend. Victoria and Hamish write their own songs and one day hope to win the Triple J’s Unearthed competition.

Our other Launceston act, Preston Archibald Player, AKA Presto, has been a performer for almost 50 years, making his name as a singer, guitarist, magician, actor, compere and comedian all around Australia. Back in the late 70s Presto toured with Country artist Buddy Williams – a true hero of Presto’s to this day. Together, they toured small Australian country towns for a year, playing six nights a week. Presto is larger than life – packed full of enthusiasm and ready to relaunch his career after retiring from his job in insurance.

Presto is performing a song by Col Joye at our Launceston show. He says “I believe there are lots of people still interested in hearing the old rock’n'roll songs”. We absolutely agree, which is why we’ve added Col Joye’s Bye Bye Baby and Johnny O’Keefe’s She’s My Baby to the Sounds of Australia Registry.
Maria Perez-Pulido. Courtesy of Maria Perez-Pulido

Maria Perez-Pulido (pictured right) is a violinist and violin maker based in Burnie. Originally from the Canary Islands, Maria made Tasmania her home in 2005, where she has a violin making business named Strings and Tassie Wood. Maria loves Burnie’s “strong cultural life”, saying it’s humbling to be around so much talent. In addition to performing with Michael Cannon on guitar, as well as running her business, Maria is completing a PhD in the acoustic properties of Tasmanian wood.

Thank you to our local performers and Cooee Cabaret audiences for helping bring the show to life.