Generations in Jazz Festival
Mount Gambier becomes Australia’s weekend music epicentre each May, when the city stages the largest youth jazz jam session the nation has ever seen. Thousands of high school students flock to Generations in Jazz to make music on a massive scale and learn from the world’s best.
The three-day Generations in Jazz festival has been held in a paddock on the city’s outskirts for more than 30 years, and with world-renown jazz virtuoso James Morrison at the helm, it simply hasn’t missed a beat.
In 2017, a record 4700 students representing 125 schools from every state and territory took part, while several thousand music lovers also came to listen in awe to the magic being created inside the gigantic big top tent dubbed the ‘Disneyland of Jazz’.
James Morrison Academy of Music
The overwhelming success of the community-driven Generations in Jazz has led to the opening of the James Morrison Academy of Music in Mount Gambier’s city centre.
This year-round band camp is affiliated with the University of South Australia, and young musicians from across Australia have moved to Mount Gambier to perform under the expert guidance of James Morrison and a host of high-profile international artists-in-residence.
Soul-stirring jazz emanates from the Old Town Hall as they study for their Diploma of Music, Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Arts Honours or Masters of Teaching.
Morrison Jazz Club
While the Academy is injecting culture and colour into the city centre, Mount Gambier’s very own New York-style jazz bar, Morrison’s Jazz Club, is adding to the cosmopolitan vibe.
Local students swing by during semester time for regular jam sessions, but so, too, do international visitors – spontaneous performances of duos, trios and big bands are common.
In the heart of Mount Gambier’s city precinct, you will find the superb Main Corner complex, incorporating the Riddoch Art Gallery.
The Main Corner and Riddoch Art Gallery emerges from the historic dolomite building, connecting Mount Gambier’s history, with interactive displays that will appeal to adults and children alike.
A diorama brings to life the Wreck of the Admella and touch screens tell the history of Mount Gambier. Incorporating the Riddoch Art Gallery, South Australia’s premier regional Gallery, featuring local collections, changing exhibitions of local artists as well as exhibitions of national importance.
The gallery also showcases local artists, community groups and both state and national touring exhibitions.
Wander down the road past the police station and enter the Art Society’s home, but there is more to this, it is housed in the Old Mount Gambier Courthouse, it is open to the public with engaging displays.
The Sir Robert Helpmann Theatre offer an array of shows throughout the year. Plan ahead and put a night at theatre into your trips itinerary.
This theatre seats 524 patrons and is equipped with wheelchair accessibility, hearing aid loop and disabled car spaces. There is also a fully licenced bar on the premises where patrons can grab a drink before the show.