Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers Music Program

Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers to bloom in September

Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers is set to bloom in September, with the addition of the Festival of Food and Wine from 10-12 September.

Unveiling their music lineup, four of the most iconic names in Australian music – Grace Knight, Wendy Matthews, Richard Clapton and GANGgajang – lead the talent acquired for this year’s Festival of Food and Wine at the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers. They will be joined over the three days by Sarah Blasko, Ash Grunwald along with The Beautiful Girls. Also among the musical highlights, nine local music-makers will take to the stage in a 50/50 split between feature and local acts.

Chair of the Toowoomba Regional Council Environment and Community Services Committee, Councillor James O’Shea, spoke of the excitement of the upcoming event.

“It’s with great excitement that we announce the line-up for the Festival of Food and Wine as part of Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers, to be held from September 10 to 12 in Queens Park, celebrating the best in Australian music and our sensational regional flavours,” said O’Shea.

“This year we are excited to welcome music makers who have created some of our country’s biggest anthems, as well as more local musicians than ever before, in a wonderful three days of celebration!”

Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers
Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers

Opening on Friday, 10 September, is 22-year-old Toowoomba singer-songwriter, James Ryle who is well known and followed locally.  After, Brisbane indie pop-rock band The Jensens take to the stage. Then it’s Sydney-based duo Lily and Grace Richardson, aka CLEWS, famed for their candied grunge, lush harmonies and cool songwriting. Brisbane’s Holy Holy closes Friday night, with duo Oscar Dawson and Tim Carroll performing new works plus highlights from their album, ‘My Own Pool of Light’, which was ARIA-nominated for Best Rock Album and received a J Award nomination for Album of The Year.

Saturday opens with talented young Toowoomba indie-pop music maker Meg Beth. The multi-instrumentalist was awarded a coveted spot in the Big Sky Girls Songwriting program in 2018 and won the USQ Get Songwriting prize in 2018 and 2019. Local contemporary vocalist and songwriter Kent Tonscheck then takes to the stage. From 2pm on Saturday ex Toowoomba, now Brisbane’s alt-pop Beamish Brothers take over. They then hand the stage to Brisbane musicians Fat Picnic, a soul-reggae festival favourite who promise to get the Saturday night party started!

Legendary Australian rock band GANGgajang will then perform. For 30 years this acoustic-loving band have made iconic Australian music and in 2021 welcome a new generation of fans after every performance. Then, it’s time for music royalty – Grace Knight and Wendy Matthews in their first show together celebrating the songs of Paul Simon, and then Richard Clapton to round out the night!

Grace Knight and Wendy Matthews are two of the most iconic and beloved singers in Australian music. They’re both multi-award winning artists with a swag of Countdown, MTV & ARIA awards between them and a bundle of platinum albums under their belt. ARIA Hall of Fame inductee Richard Clapton, one of the country’s foremost singer/songwriters and the one who paved the way for generations of songwriters to write about the experience of being Australian, takes over.

On Sunday the stage opens with local singing-songwriting talent, the Jasmine Aleisha Duo, then the brilliantly named three-piece groove-rock band Fenny and the Mets, before local 3 piece band Van Lil Band. From 3:00 PM, Brisbane-based six-piece Open Season will share their exciting new wave of country folk, a marriage of traditional folk and modern country! Then one of Australia’s most captivating music storytellers takes to the stage in blues musician and five-time ARIA nominated, Ash Grunwald. Sydney’s The Beautiful Girls, a folk, soul, jazz, hip hop and roots group founded by Mat McHugh, Clay MacDonald and Mitchell Connelly who’s last four albums all peaked in the top 20 on the ARIA charts.

Closing Sunday night – and the Festival of Food and Wine– is Sarah Blasko who holds the rare position in Australia of having an unparalleled six-album run of genre-defining indie-rock and art-pop, as well as countless award nominations, three ARIA awards and Triple J’s Album Of The Year for ‘As Day Follows Night’.

In addition to over 40 food and wine stalls, new to the Festival in 2021 is a range of Carnival Hampers, showcasing local produce and the perfect way to enjoy the park and the tunes! These are available to order online and can be collected in the Festival ready to enjoy.

While the Festival of Food and Wine spans over three days, the multi-award-winning Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers (TCOF) will take place for the full month of September this year, an extension of the past 10-day event program, and a sign of the success of its COVID-19 planning.  Taking centre stage over the new 30-day format will be over 190,000 flowers and local flavours, as the event blooms both locals and visitors.

For more information about Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers, please visit their website

Festival of Food and Wine – Music Program: 

Friday, 10 September from 3.15 PM:

  • James Ryle – local
  • The Jensens – Brisbane
  • Clews – Sydney
  • Holy Holy – Brisbane

Saturday, 11 September from 10.15 AM:

  • Meg Beth – local
  • Kent Tonscheck – local
  • Beamish Brothers –  ex Toowoomba, now Brisbane
  • Fat Picnic – Brisbane
  • GANGgajang – Sydney
  • Wendy Matthews & Grace Knight ‘ We’re Going to Graceland’ The Song of Paul Simon – Sydney
  • Richard Clapton – Sydney

Sunday, 12 September from 10.15 AM:

  • Jasmine Aleisha Duo – local
  • Fenny and the Mets – local
  • Van Lil Band– local
  • Open Seasons Band – Brisbane
  • Ash Grunwald – Melbourne
  • The Beautiful Girls – Sydney
  • Sarah Blasko – Sydney

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