10/01/2006 - 21:00

Wine helps make music sweeter

10/01/2006 - 21:00


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This time of year used to be relatively quiet for winemakers.

Wine helps make music sweeter

This time of year used to be relatively quiet for winemakers. Sure, there winemaking teams were hard at work with vintage only a few months away, but the rest of the operation seemed to just dawdle until the new season’s fruit was in.

Then someone came up with the idea of the winery concert, a plan designed to get wineries out of their dormant season with savvy marketing and slick promotion.

By combining superfluous non-grape-growing expanses of winery land with the premier music talents of local and international artists, these wine concerts have become a key feature of wine marketing and tourism ever since.

Locally the formula is best showcased by Leeuwin, with its concert series now more than 20 years old.

What began in 1985 with the winery providing financial support for the the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s tour of Australia has grown into an international success.

Over the years, established players have joined in the musical act, from small theatre performances to expansive rock and roll shows.

The marriage of music and wine peaked during last year’s Margaret River Wine Festival, with 75 different wine venues hosting musical performances.

Financial benefits for the wineries aside, the effects on the performing arts scene can’t be overstated.

Typifying a symbiotic relationship at its best, Voyager Estate in partnership with the emerging Noble Rot Theatre Company created Vintage Stomp! – Western Australia first community-based vintage festival.

But it is not just Margaret River tuning into the sounds of wine concert fever.

This year, respected Mount Barker producer Goundrey is hosting the Mount Barker D’Vine Wine Festival.

Scheduled for January 14, the sixth annual D’Vine Festival will gather together more than 14 local producers and local musical talent.


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