The success of this year’s Gwydol competition has cemented its place in the Bingara Australia Day calendar.
The event this year attracted four competitors in the junior section and six in the Open Section. Four years ago, when the event started under the name of Gwydir Idol, most of the acts were accompanied by CD.
This year, only two of the contestants used CD backing. This proved disastrous for one contestant, when the music went ‘haywire’. The contestant, Kiarnah Walton, keep her composure under adversity, and agreed to sing ‘Barricades and Brickwalls’ without music, which she did very well.
Kendall Ross, accompanied by Bill McIntosh, sang Bless the Broken Road. Kendall and Kiarnah shared third place in the competition.
Second place was Benjamin Nelson, who played guitar and sang Where do the Children Play?’
|Last year’s winner and Gwydol, Jamie Wilson returned to again win the Junior Section with ‘3am’.|
After entertainment by former Gwydol winner Jamie Flegerbein, the Open Section drew a wide variety of acts, with a definite move away from the standard country music of previous years.
The first contestant, Paul Nelson, made an impression with the Cold Chisel song ‘Khe Sanh’. He was followed by Fiona Ozols, with a sultry rendition of ‘Fever’, with Rick Hutton on guitar accompaniment, then Rick was back on stage with son, Nick, to sing ‘The Whale’.
Marie Warren followed with the poem ‘How McDougall Topped the Score’.
Winner of the Open Section and Gwydol 2008, Amy McIntosh, with her husband Bill, Mayor Peter Caskey, and Bingara’s Australfia Day Ambassador, Penny Cook.
The final act of the night was the winning one. Amy McIntosh, accompanied by husband Bill, impressed the judges her song ‘Travelling Soldier’, earned her the open section and the title of 2008 Gwydol.
Compere, Peter Caddey, also entertained the crowd, as did Tony and Helen Cornish before and after the event, as well as before Australia Day ceremony.