Latest News

Message from Paul Dean, Artistic Director

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Paul Dean_image 3
Dear Four Winds Friends
I wonder if, like me, you are now looking forward to Easter 2016 and
all that the next holiday season might bring. Well I have something better
than chocolate to share with you – and it is good for your health.
Four Winds 2016 Easter Festival is offering two full days of nourishing live
music performances and healthy food from local suppliers.  Feed your soul
and be inspired by the smooth and velvety music of Mendelssohn, Dvorak
and Gershwin mixed deliciously with the dark notes of Gruber’s Frankenstein.
You will experience the stunning outdoor surroundings of Nature’s Concert
Hall and enjoy a diet of musical virtuosity, where Australia’s best meet fine
international artists such as the Europe- based Navarra String Quartet, the
dynamic young British violinst, Jack Liebeck, award winning cellist, Li-Wei Qin,
and Australia’s own Sculthorpe Wind Quintet.
Bring your family and friends and share in a truly unique experience.
The only thing that you might want to add to complete your Easter experience
is some delicious Easter chocolate…!
I look forward to welcoming you.
Paul Dean
Artistic Director
Four Winds 2016 Easter Festival

Happy New Year

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With 80 artists, 21 events and 33 performances the Four Winds 2016 Easter Festival will bring six days of exquisite music to this beautiful part of the world. There is something for everyone and the festival experience is set to be a memorable one for music enthusiasts of all ages.

We’ve had quite a few enquiries about what food will be available throughout the Festival weekend at the Four Winds site. Whilst you are most welcome to bring your own picnic there will be a healthy collection of local food vendors on hand to ensure everyone can sample some of the best local produce including a ‘Brunch Buggy’ muesli breakfast stand, Wapengo Oysters, Honorbread baguettes, Japanese dumplings and delicacies, Cobargo Home-Made Ice Cream, Ragino Coffee, local wines from our wine sponsor, Rusty Fig, will feature at the bar and, of course, there will be tastings of Four Winds Marmalade.

For all details of the full program, ticket packages, child-minding, the youth workshop program and the free bus service that will service the Festival site and will run from Narooma to Merimbula go to, call 02 6493 3414 or drop in and visit the office at the Bermagui Community Centre.

Photo ©Hugues Villemain –

Four Winds | Artists in Residence: The String Contingent

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Four winds proudly presents ‘Artists in Residence: The String Contingent’.

A whole week of musical creativity and improvisation to generate potential new pieces for their album and their upcoming tour.

The String Contingent  will pull back the curtains on the process of creativity by sharing their daily input on this blog.

On top of that, The String Contingent  will experiment with creating music by improvising rather than showing just the finished, perfectly rehearsed piece. It’s an experiment to focus on their ‘weak points’ as musicians; to confront themselves with not having total control over the creation but letting themselves drift into a new way of creating music.

We invite you to be part of this journey. To get directly involved by giving us and them your honest feedback.
Your comments, feedback, questions and suggestions will all affect and influence the process of their rehearsals and thinking.

After the tour, The String Contingent  will return to the Windsong Pavilion in April to record their new album.

The residency will be captured by Rafael and Sophia who will film, photograph and blog.

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Retrospect / Au revoir!

A week full of emotions, practice, and an inspiring musical progress in improvisation has come to an end.

From slight fear to overexcitement, from frustration and holding back to breathing in and letting go. From discomfort and insecurity to curiosity. Towards finding a way that feels comfortable for everyone.
Less tension. More comfort. More ease.
All accompanied with dedication, enthusiasm and of course a big bunch of talent.
All leading to a productive ambience of flow and joy.

I wish they could have stayed for another week from this point – to benefit from this newly gained flow and confidence, and especially the ease that settled in their minds and hands while jamming.

It was incredibly interesting to be able to observe this progress and get such a deep insight.

I am very curious to see what the next months will bring while they keep improvising and evolving their ideas on their tour. New experiences at each gig. Breaking out of old habits into this exciting excursion of this diverse new ways of playing and thinking. Live in concert – in front of an audience!

They will be back in April at Four Winds to record their new improvisation based album, with the pieces they developed and refined during their upcoming tour.

Stay tuned on this blog! More pieces and Soundcloud files of The String Contingent will follow!

Au revoir!

Yours sincerely,

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In the nude

No magic. Toil. Despair. Practice. Confusion. Reality.

The String Contingent  reveals with ‘In the nude’ an extract of how much work goes into creating music.

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Improvisation – live in concert

“In the nude. Without a net. In front of everyone.”
A pretty laconic sum up by Steve who attended the first live improvisation in concert of The String Contingent.

The video gives a beautiful insight into one of the challenges of free jamming: Communication.
Lean back, have a look and in best case let us know what you feel and think!

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Improvisation 1 / Day 2

As an “outsider” observing the whole process, you realize quickly how delicate it must be for a band to give up their routine and habits by focusing on improvising.

There are a lot of emotions involved and it requires a lot of courage and discipline. One needs to stay alert all the time to be able to adapt changes and interact harmoniously. It’s definitely a great way to get a better understanding of harmonies, melodies, rhythms but also emotions involved and personal limits.

It is fascinating to see how much personality gets unveiled and how important it is to listen to each other. To keep the balance of engagement and release. The String Contingent  managed well to create a base where creativity can flow.

Later in the afternoon, they performed an intimate concert where they seized the opportunity to play a freely improvised piece in front of an audience for the first time.

Please find below an excerpt of the first improvisation that resulted of the residency.
For those you are interested in the whole session, indulge yourself with the full extended version via the soundcloud link below!

Four Winds and The String Contingent  highly encourage you to give us your opinion.
Is there anything that attracted your attention in particular? Anything you really enjoyed or would like to be worked on?
We are happy to receive any constructive critiques, comments and any upcoming questions via the comment form below.

Full extended version of the jam:

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The Arrival // Day 1

After more heavy rain fall and even more closed east coast roads, The String Contingent  finally arrived safely at The Windsong Pavilion at Four Winds.

The String Contingent let their passion, talent and ambition pair up with a remarkable endurance to lead into a productive day full of improvising. Warming up in the spotlight of the pavilion with a rewarding view out of the big front window, they didn’t miss a minute to get the most out of the residency.

It’s a real pleasure to be part of this process and to have the opportunity to provide a supportive atmosphere for their creative improvised project.

You, too, could be part of this process! Is there anything particular you would love to see and hear?
Just leave a comment on the bottom of this blog and share your opinion with us.

So long for now. We’ll keep you updated.

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Almost day one

The rain decided to have a bigger impact on their arrival than expected.
A short intro to almost day one:


2015 Gallery of Highlights at Four Winds

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January 2015 | The Four Winds Convivium

February 2015 | Four Winds Four Writers

March 2015 | Archie Roach & Shellie Morris

April 2015 | The Penny Quartet

June 2015 | Taikoz

June 2015 | Vale Neilma Gantner, Four Winds Founder

July 2015 | The Griffyn Ensemble

July 2015 | Genevieve Lacey & Jim Atkins in Residence

July 2015 | Native Species Arboretum Tree Planting begins

August 2015 | Tim Cope, Paul West & Bukhu

September 2015 | Spring Sing

October 2015 | Four Winds Open Day & Launch of Festival 2016 Program

October 2015 | Zephyrs Presents: The Vampires

October 2015 | ANAM Brass Banter

November 2015 | David Hewitt in Residence

November 2015 | A Day with Richard Gill

November 2015 | Lisa Young Workshops

November 2015 | Radical Son & Yuin Artists in Residence

November 2015 | A Tase of Four Winds @ bei amici

December 2015 | Bermagui Primary Wetlands Song Day

December 2015 | Carols in the Pavilion

The Flavour of Four Winds Photo Gallery

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The Bei Amici Restaurant in Darling Point was the venue for a relaxed afternoon which brought together friends of Four Winds in Sydney recently. A special thank you to Michael and Manuela Darling, Four Winds Ambassadors, for making it possible and to Felix Rutz and Leigh Cholakos of Bei Amici for hosting such a beautiful event.

At the event we shared our plans for the Four Winds 2016 Easter Festival and introduced guests to the talented Festival artist, Nicholas Ng.

Photos by ©Hugues Villemain –

Remember! Early bird ticket sales finish on 31st December so if you haven’t yet purchased your Festival tickets this is a great time to secure your place. Go to: or call 02 9493 3414.

2016 Easter Saturday & Sunday at the Sound Shell

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Easter Saturday and Sunday at the Sound Shell is set to be a divine weekend of incredible artists, exceptional music and fine local food in the Four Winds outdoor amphitheatre. Paul Dean, our Artistic Director, has secured a stellar line up of world-renowned artists that will ensure your festival experience is a truly memorable one.

The Saturday and Sunday program at a glance is as follows –

Sound Shell Saturday
Saturday 26 March 2016 | 9:30am – 4:00pm | Sound Shell

 Koora Koorai, Welcome to Country | Featuring Radical Son, Gulaga Dancers and Warren Foster.

Dvořák, Wind Serenade | A chamber composition by the Czech composer Antonin Dvořák, featuring Shefali Pryor, oboe; Paul Dean,clarinet; Lloyd van’t Hoff, clarinet; Matthew Wilkie, bassoon; Matthew Kneale, bassoon; Ben Jacks, French horn; Rachel Shaw, French horn; Trish O’Brien, cello, Rohan Dasika, double bass.

Ravel, String Quartet | Composed by Maurice Ravel in April 1903 at the age of 28, performed by the exceptional Navarra String Quartet who are joining us from the UK.

AlexRaineriLedger, New Work | James Ledger will talk about his new work, commissioned by Four Winds for the 2016 Festival, that will premiere on Sunday.

Schumann, Piano Quartet | Written in 1842, Alex Raineri, piano; Jack Liebeck, violin; Simone Van Der Geisson, viola; Li-Wei Qin, cello.



unnamed Taikoz Trio| Explosive energy and extreme dynamism with refinement and grace, featuring Ian Cleworth, Kevin Mann and Sophia Ang.

Butterworth, A Shropshire Lad  | Alex Raineri, piano; Andrew Goodwin,tenor.

Sculthorpe, 8th String Quartet | Penny String Quartet.

Paul Stanhope, Pulse : Heart : Beat | Kiran Phatak, flute; Paul Dean, clarinet; Lloyd van’t Hoff, clarinet; Amy Brookman, violin; Anthony Chataway, viola; Jack Ward, cello; Alex Raineri, piano.

unnamed (1) HK Gruber, Frankenstein | A pan-demonium for baritone chansonnier and orchestra based on children’s rhymes, this is one of the strangest, most engaging pieces of music and involves a collection of toy instruments. Featuring Jason Barry-Smith, baritone; Emma Scholl, flute; Paul Dean, clarinet; Matthew Kneale, bassoon; Ben Jacks, French horn; David Elton, trumpet; Amy Brookman, violin; Madeleine Jevons, violin; Tom Higham, viola; Trish O’Brien, cello; Rohan Dasika, double bass; Alex Raineri, piano.


Sound Shell Sunday
Sunday 27 March 2016 | 10:00am – 4:00pm | Sound Shell

Li-WeiQin Hindson (arr Power), Cello Concerto, 2nd movement | Soloist: Li-Wei Qin, cello.

Mendelssohn, Violin Concerto in E minor | Soloist: Jack Liebeck,violin.

Britten, Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings | Andrew Goodwin,tenor; Ben Jacks, French horn and the Festival string orchestra including the Navarra String Quartet.

Ledger, World Premiere | Ledger’s 2016 Four Winds commissioned work. JamesLedger

Shostakovich, Piano Concerto No 1 | Soloist: Alex Raineri, piano.


Erhu, a recital celebrating this ancient Chinese instrument | Nicholas Ng, Erhu.

Hindson, Light Music | The Arcadia Wind Quintet.

Hind, The Tower of Silence | Zubin Kanga, solo piano.

Gershwin, Songs (arr by Ledger) | Andrew Goodwin, tenor.

Gershwin, Rhapsody in Blue | Zubin Kanga, piano, with Festival Artists en masse.

We would love to see you there!
For more information, including more details on all our artists and ticket packages, please visit our Festival page.

Artist Profile | The Navarra String Quartet

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We are very pleased to be welcoming the renowned Navarra String Quartet from the UK to the Four Winds 2016 Festival.

The Navarra String Quartet has built an international reputation as one of the world’s most dynamic and poetic string quartets. They have been recognised with several awards including the MIDEM Classique Young Artist Award, a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship and prizes at the Banff, Melbourne and Florence International String Quartet competitions.


The Quartet consists of violinist Magnus Johnston, violist Simone van der Giessen, violinist Marije Johnston and cellist Brian O’Kane – between them the members of the Navarra Quartet have impressive musical résumés. All are eminent in their fields and were drawn together from across Europe by a love for chamber music and a desire to showcase it at the highest level.

The Navarra Quartet has appeared in major concert venues throughout the world, at numerous international festivals and collaborated with some truly wonderful musicians such as Li-Wei Qin, Jack Liebeck and Guy Johnston.

The Navarra String Quartet will be performing Ravel’s String Quartet on the morning of Saturday 26th March in the Four Winds outdoor Sound Shell. They will also be performing on the evenings of both Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th March as part of the indoor ‘Windsong Chamber Series’ set to run across the three evenings of the Festival. The Navarra Quartet’s ‘Close to Home’ intimate House Concert performance on Thursday 24th March is already SOLD OUT.

Below is a short video introduction to the Quartet put together by the Banff International String Quartet Competition:

And a taste of what’s to come during their Four Winds performances:

For more details on the Navarra String Quartet’s 2016 Four Winds Festival performances, click here.

To find our more about the Four Winds 2016 Easter Festival and to purchase tickets, click here.

Maboba’s Promise Screens ‘Love Marriage in Kabul’ in the Windsong Pavilion

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Australian aid organisation, Mahboba’s Promise, has decided to kick off their 2016 program by screening their award-winning documentary, Love Marriage in Kabul, in the Windsong Pavilion on the afternoon of Saturday 9 January 2016. The film promises to take viewers on a journey into a country not often accessed by the outside world.

Love Marriage in Kabul follows the incredible journey of Australian-Afghan woman, Mahboba Rawi, the founder of Mahboba’s Promise, as she challenges old traditions and passionately negotiates to make a love marriage happen in Kabul.

Directed by Iranian-Australian, Amin Palangi, Love Marriage in Kabul has won numerous awards including the Audience Award at the Sydney Film Festival and Best Documentary Award at the Canberra International Film Festival.


Mahboba and the girls of the Panjshir Valley

The evening will be a revenue raiser for Mahboba’s Promise, an aid organisation with no political or religious ties to any groups, whose main concern is providing women and children with a path to being independent and self-sufficient in a country that has been racked by decades of war and where social safety nets do not exist.

Mahboba’s Promise has around twenty development projects in Afghanistan including orphanages, schools, and vocational and social enterprise programs. Proceeds from the event will be donated to Mahboba’s Promise to help support its projects in Afghanistan.

Abdul on the roof at night

Abdul on the roof at night

There will be light refreshments, a Q&A session and a bar available after the show. Tickets will be sold at the door for $25. No bookings are required.

Please keep an eye on our Facebook page for more updates.


An Update on Our ‘Carols in the Pavilion’

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Four Winds, with its friends Heartsong and the Friday Choir, are presenting an awe-inspiring evening of choral Christmas music in the Windsong Pavilion at Four Winds’ beautiful ‘Nature’s Concert Hall’ site at Barragga Bay.

At this busy time of year take a moment to relax. This concert offers you the chance to start your Christmas with a moment of peace and beauty – it will end with some communal carol singing under the stars. Audience members will be treated to mulled wine and mince pies within their ticket price.

Traditional carols such as ‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ and the ‘Wexford Carol’ will meet works by major composers; ‘Legend’ by Tchaikovsky and ‘Break Forth, O Beauteous Heavenly Light’ by Bach. Quiet and reflective pieces such as the Polish lullaby ‘Usnijze mi, usnij’ by Gorecki and ‘Infant Holy’ by Wilcocks will be complemented by the luscious harmonies of Warlock’s ‘Bethlehem Down’.

Heartsong, made up of 40 choristers will perform alongside the 8 piece Friday Choir. Together they will create a performance of pure peace and beauty during the last weekend before Christmas.  We encourage you to come along to spend 90 minutes immersed in magical Christmas music performed by local choristers.

Tickets are $40. There will be mulled wine and mince pies as well as tea and coffee available after the performance.

For a taste of what’s in store for you, have a listen below:

We would very much like to see you there and to share a pre-Christmas celebration with you.  For more details and to purchase tickets, click here.

To read our previous blog post about the two special carols events we are hosting this year, click here.

What’s New at the 2016 Four Winds Festival

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The 2016 Four Winds Festival will run for an unprecedented 6 days of musical joy. This extra time will allow us to bring more performances and music-in-nature experiences to our festival-goers and the community. It also means that we will be running several new elements to the Festival — there really will be something for everyone!

Click here to go straight to our early bird tickets and packages–from now until 31 December!

Free Opening Concert:

We will be presenting a free, opening concert on Friday 25th March, held at the Four Winds’ site for the first time and featuring collaboration between local fLiNg Physical Theatre and preeminent percussion group, Ensemble Offspring. The performance of Philip Glass’ Music for Changing Parts is going to be pretty special and way for us to say thank you to our wonderful, supportive community.

‘Close to Home’ House Concert Series:

sculthorpe wind quintet

The Sculthorpe Quintet featuring Emma Sholl, Shefali Pryor, Lyndon Watts, Ben Jacks, and Paul Dean.

In the lead up to the Festival, Four Winds presents the ‘Close to Home’ House Concerts series. This selection of intimate and acoustic performances will be held at spectacular local homes. The Sculthorpe Quintet will be performing in a Tilba home on Tuesday 22 March 2016; Zubin Kanga, Jack Liebeck, and Nicholas Ng will come together to perform in a home at Barragga Bay on Wednesday 23 March 2016. We are thrilled that the Navarra String Quartet performance in a Murrah home on Thursday 24 March 2016 has already sold out. Tickets for the other performances are selling fast so please book now in order not to miss these very special performances.

Windsong Chamber Music Series:

Every evening during the Festival, there will be something special happening at the Windsong Pavilion. As part of our ‘Windsong Chamber Music Series’, between the 25 and 27 March 2016 we will present a different, remarkable program of chamber music: Friday 25 March 2016, Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time; Saturday 26 March 2016 works by Haydn and Schubert; Sunday 27 March 2016 Britten’s 3rd String Quartet and Brahm’s Clarinet Quintet. There are several different ticket packages available to make sure you don’t miss out on one of these beautiful evening performances. Have a look at our Festival page for more details.

The Double Bar:

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Paul McDermott at the Festival’s Double Bar in 2014.

In the centre of town, the Bermagui Community Hall will be transformed into The Double Bar—a relaxed place for festival-goers, festival performers, and all the community to mingle and share in the festivities. This year, as part of our ‘After Dark’ program, The Double Bar will play host to the fantastic Radical Son on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 March 2016. Traversing musical genres like soul and hip-hop, and featuring a seven-piece band, Radical Son is a performer that galvanises and energises all audiences. These performances promise to bring something wonderful right to the heart of town. The Double Bar will also be open on Sunday evening, whilst no performance is scheduled, it’s a great chance to mingle and relax together as the Festival winds down.


Radical Son.


Tickets and More Information:

Early bird ticket packages are available for all events during the Festival on our website until the 31 December 2015. A lot of events are selling fast so make sure you secure your tickets for the Festival.

Our local accommodation is also filling fast for the weekend of the Festival. If you are one of our out-of-town visitors, follow this link to get more information about the accommodation in the area.

We can’t wait to welcome you  to our 2016 Festival and share a remarkable musical experience with you.

Four Winds’ Architects Awarded for their Excellence!

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Four Winds is very proud to announce that the architects responsible for the creation of our two beautiful performance venues–the Windsong Pavilion and the Sound Shell–have been recognised in the 2015 National Architecture Awards.

Phillip Cox, founding partner of Cox Architecture and designer of the Four Winds’ Sound Shell, has been awarded the 2015 National Architecture Awards: Public Award for the firm’s work on the redevelopment of the Adelaide Oval.

ArchitectureAU says, ‘All parts of the Adelaide Oval have been carefully considered to produce what must be, nationally, one of the most accessible and most spatially dramatic public buildings devoted to sport.’

SoundShellFour Winds Sound Shell - Picture by Ben Marden - low res

Philip Cox’s Sound Shell in action at a Four Winds Festival

To read more about Philip’s award, click here.

Also in the same awards ceremony, Clinton Murray, of Clinton Murray Architects and designer of the Windsong Pavilion, has been awarded the 2015 National Architecture Awards: Residential – Houses (News) for his collaboration with Polly Harbison on the Balmoral House.

Of this stunningly designed house, ArchitectureAU says, ‘Balmoral House nurtures structure, art, environment and lifestyle to the maximum.’

Windsong Pavilion front photo by Robert Tacheci

Clinton Murray’s the Windsong Pavilion at the Four Wind’s site.

To read more about Clinton’s work and see pictures of the beautiful Balmoral House, click here.

Four Winds Presents a Special Carol Experience

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The festive season is fast upon us and for Four Winds that means the start of our Christmas choral program.

We have a number of things planned to musically mark the start of the silly season. A special, Community Carols event will take place on the Dickinson Oval in the heart of Bermagui, 18th December 2015. This event will be a celebration of community and the beautiful place we share, something Four Winds is very proud to be hosting. It is a free event and more details will be announced soon. Keep an eye on our What’s On page for updates.

The highlight of our Christmas program however, will be the Carols in the Pavilion: a traditional carol experience at Four Winds Windsong Pavilion for those wishing to experience the beauty of choral seasonal music. This event is shaping up to be a really special evening featuring two of our wonderful local choirs in the magnificent natural Four Winds site. Heartsong and the Friday Choir will take visitors on a beautiful musical journey beginning in the Windsong Pavilion and finishing under the stars. The program will include pieces from JS Bach, Prayer Before Sleep by Robinovitch and Ubi Caritas by Gjeilo.

Previous years have been a great success with the sound of choral voices floating over the water and into the summer twilight.

2014 December - Christmas Carols stage lights MC - photo by Robert Tacheci 2- low res

Carols in the Pavilion, 2014

We strongly encourage you to come and be a part of this intimate, seasonal event.

For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

Limelight Magazine Feature: Vibrancy, Serenity & the Unknown

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Artistic Director of the 2016 Four Winds Festival, Paul Dean, shares his key curatorial ingredients…

Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 3.04.38 pm

Why do people go to music festivals? Festivals, particularly regional festivals, create a unique environment for the creation and performance of arts. Audiences are out of their normal lives, and normal surroundings and in a sense give themselves to the Festival – therefore creating a wonderful performer and listener/observer relationship. No one in the audience, especially at Four Winds, is really worried about getting up early for work the next day, or fighting the mad city traffic to get an incredibly over priced car park in an unbelievable rush to make the downbeat.

Click here to read full article at Limelight Magazine

Richard Gill talks Music Education on ABC South East

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Recently, Richard Gill appeared in conversation with Tim Holt on ABC South East, discussing his beliefs surrounding the importance of a revolutionised musical education in Australian school curriculums. “Music holds the key to a quality education system,” said Richard.

You can listen to the entire, enlightening interview here:

For more information about Richard’s events on November 18th, please click here.

Dave Hewitt begins his Four Winds Residency

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A beautiful sunny morning at the Four Winds site welcomes David Hewitt, acclaimed percussionist and composer, with Jed Silver, sound artist/engineer, to day 3 of their residency in the Windsong Pavilion.

ONDES_Nov2015_David Hewitt res

Dave and Jed in the Windsong Pavilion.

Dave, continuing from his residency last year, will be working on a composition titled ONDES, a solo piece for percussion, voice, and live sound design.

ONDES_Nov2015_David Hewitt Res 3

The view from the sound design deck.

Says Dave, “my starting point with ONDES is to explore gradually evolving waves of mesmeric rhythms and vocal melodies. For me this approach reflects the patient and evolving character of the local landscape, it’s seasons and it’s community. This meditative approach also serves to focus my creativity energies and to open up the possibility of other ideas. The material developed through ONDES will ultimately form the basis for a number of distinct projects which are also likely to include other artists i.e. musicians,choreographers, lighting designers and multimedia. Jed Silver, joins me as we collaborate to further develop this material utilizing his incredible skills in manipulating live sound.”

ONDES_Nov2015_David Hewitt Res 2

Dave and Jed will be in the Windsong Pavilion until the end of this week. We’re very excited to see the finished product!

Paul Dean’s Postcard from India

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Apart from being Artistic Director of the Four Winds Festival, I’m very privileged to play with the Australian World Orchestra and am currently on tour with them in India.

So, I thought I’d send you all a postcard!

The highlights have been too numerous to mention. Playing Schubert’s 9th Symphony with Zubin Mehta is a pretty tough one to beat, I have to say the orchestra has played absolutely incredibly during the tour.
However, visiting slums on Saturday with Belinda MacFarlane (violin LSO), Monica Curro (violin MSO) and Troy Greatz (Percussion WASO) and playing a concert for the extraordinary children there was life changing. Never before have I felt so humbled and privileged to be a musician. An incredible audience!
Nov2015_Paul Dean in India_Weightlifting Centre_cropped
The orchestra rehearses Schubert 9 in the New Delhi Weightlifting centre. Made for a very acceptable concert hall. Great plaque about the Maestro at the back of the stage!
Nov2015_Paul Dean in India_Concert hall in Mumbai_with captions
The Australian World Orchestra with the Maestro post concert number 2 in the Concert Hall in Mumbai. Notice that the Maestro places the wind section around the front of the string section when playing Schubert 9. A career highlight for me.
I’m so pleased to be flying the flag for Australia, Four Winds and Bermagui on this wonderful international tour.  I am really looking forward to playing for you at the 2016 Festival in performances of Dvorak’s Wind Serenade and Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time to name just a couple.  Of course I can’t sign off without reminding you that tickets are now on sale. If you haven’t yet purchased your Festival tickets then please click here.
Very best wishes
Paul Dean
Artistic Director
PS – I recently did an interview with Alex Sloan on ABC666 Canberra, so if you’d like to find out more about my life as a musician you might like to follow this link…

The Value of Music Education – Richard Gill

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“Music is important for the following reasons: it is abstract, it doesn’t mean anything outside itself. Music does not describe. Music does not narrate. Music does not tell stories. Music evokes. Music suggests, music implies, and music opens up the mind of a child in an extraordinary way. This abstraction about music is what offers a child the chance to move into a really special way of thinking.”

Richard Gill OAM is one of Australia’s pre-eminent conductors and has been recognised for his contribution to music by receiving several awards. Perhaps most importantly, however, has been his work in music education and the revitalisation of music in Australian schools.

Four Winds is very excited to be welcoming Richard to The Windsong Pavilion on November 18th to share his insights. The day will begin with a participative creative music workshop from 9:30am – 3pm, for music teachers, music leaders and music enthusiasts in and out of the classroom. Following that, Richard will deliver a keynote address from 4:30 – 6:30pm on how he believes music can transform lives.  We suggest you watch the video below to get a sense of what an interesting and engaging session this is going to be.

For more information on the day or to book your spot, please follow this link.

Planting Has Begun!

By | Latest News, Native Species Arboretum | No Comments

Our Native Species Arboretum is underway thanks to the hard work by botanist and coastcarer, Stuart Cameron, and our site manager, Russell. With generous assistance from the 25th Anniversary Landcare Grants 2014-15, we are working to restore the ex-beef cattle grazing lands of the Four Winds site to its original state. Stuart Cameron, has designed a specific vegetation management strategy to recreate the distinctively local species and plant communities that mark this area, and to illustrate the richness and uniqueness of the region’s botanical heritage.

“We take our custodianship of the land at the Four Winds site very seriously,” said Sheena Boughen, Four Winds Chair, “and have attempted to infuse everything we do with that appreciation of the natural environment.” The first tasks of planting native species are underway with involvement of volunteers from the local community and we hope that this project will bring a greater appreciation of the unique South Coast environment, a wider sense of the importance of working towards restoring and maintaining our fragile and precious natural spaces, and provide opportunities for people to directly participate in the natural space.

Tree Planting_6July2015v 2


Stayed tuned for more updates on the progress of the site. If you would like to get involved and volunteer as part of the regeneration team, please click here.

2016 Festival Tickets Now on Sale!

By | Festival, Latest News | No Comments

We are very excited to launch the program for the 2016 Four Winds Festival and to announce that tickets are now available for purchase.

It is going to be an invigorating and exciting weekend, with many different events and performances to keep you busy.

photo by Warren Purnell

photo by Warren Purnell


Please go to our Festival page for more information and to find the program.

Wise Up to Wetlands

By | Bermagui Project, Community, Latest News | No Comments

Four Winds exists to enrich the lives of people through the power of unique music-in-nature experiences. We are also committed to raising an awareness of nature through the artistic form. We believe this creates a dialogue and stimulates thought regarding environmental issues in an innovative way that extends the reach of important environmental issues and concerns to new audiences.

Wise up to Wetlands is a school based artistic program that aims to raise an awareness and knowledge of the important wetland areas in Bermagui. There is a clear lack of community knowledge about the uniqueness and value of these areas that we hope to address by instilling an awareness, recognition and pride in them.


The project involves the commissioning of a song to be composed by four of Four Winds Indigenous artistic collaborators: Warren Foster Snr, Warren Foster Jnr, Jacob Morris, and Joel Deaves. These artists have consistently provided quality musical outcomes in past projects with us. As Yuin Traditional Owners they are committed to education about important wetlands.

Once developed, the Bermagui Primary School will partner with us to teach the song to 150 students so that it may be performed at future Four Winds, school and community events.

This project compliments and supports another developing Four Winds project, known as the ‘Bermagui Project’ which brings together Indigenous, arts and non-arts (eg. sciences, philosophy, health) communities to creatively collaborate in alternative ways of engaging communities about place by provoking dialogue and attracting audiences to be active participants. With both these projects, we seek to promote the cross-cultural knowledge of contemporary Indigenous artists whose ancestry has long recognised this place and the link between art, culture and expression.

Four Winds is extremely grateful to Local Land Services South East for their support as a funder of the Wise Up to Wetlands project.