Castlemaine event to connect a community …

The unprecedented fires impacting Victoria and other states, and the underlying issue of climate change, is upsetting not just for those directly involved – but for the wider community.
It’s a strong awareness of this that’s prompted local muso and editor and publisher of national health and wellbeing magazine The Art of Healing, Cate Mercer, to organise a special community event featuring lots of live music.
The Castlemaine local says the public event she’s organised for this Saturday at Castlemaine’s Victory Park is aimed at bringing people together to share and connect.
The lineup of music performers that will be part of the evening event draws on the deep well of local musical talent including Cate’s own trio, Hawk and Dove.
“I think that as a community we are going through a lot of grief,” Cate says.
“My aim is to use music as a medium for expressing that and connecting everybody.”
Saturday evening’s event is being referred to as the Community Thank You and Gathering.
“It will be a thank you to everyone who is working to provide help, assistance and bushfire relief – now and in the future,” says Cate – who also tells the Express that she prefers to leave the political side of things to others.
“Everyone is invited and welcome to come along. The evening will be about healing and connection and expression through art, story and song.
“When it comes to emotions, I really don’t think sometimes we have the words to adequately describe how we are feeling during times like these.
“But there are some things we do know and that is that we are all feeling this. We are all in pain. We are all in confusion. We are all looking for someone to blame.
“We are angry. This is because we are grieving. We are individually and collectively in grief.
“The Kübler-Ross model suggests there are five stages of grief – denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
“One of the main reasons I have created this event, is to provide a space for everyone to come together to share how we are feeling together – largely through music and song, but also by connecting with others.”
Cate says she feels it is important to give everyone the opportunity to reach out to others, so everyone is invited and welcome.
“I think it is way underestimated just how good these sorts of events are, to make us feel good about ourselves and just how much healing can occur when you reach out to others who are having similar experiences.”
Musicians participating include Kenny Joe Blake, Lauren Lee Williams, Ange Lawson, Mick Bowden, Kinnon Holt, Lloyd Dodsworth and Peter & The Wolves.
The Community Thank You and Gathering happens 7-10pm this Saturday January 18.

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