THE Organs of the Ballarat Goldfields Festival is on again and as big as ever with 23 recitals taking place.
The program will once again feature classical music to suit all tastes, including a few surprises.
After the first festival in 1996 it has grown into 10 days of fine music and social interaction.
But the focus goes beyond music with the history of the area, the churches and public buildings, parks and gardens and private homes all being made available to visitors.
The 2013 festival kicked off at St Patrick’s Cathedral on Friday night with Christmas Oratorio directed by Gary Ekkel and originally composed by JS Bach.
Among other events, Craig’s Royal Hotel will put on the festival dinner on Friday night, while the Wendouree Centre for Performing Arts will host famous jazz pianist Alan Zavod in A Homage to Gershwin on Saturday.
The final recital at St Patrick’s Cathedral on Sunday is the performance of Misa Criolla by Ariel Ramirez and the Gloriana Choir with soloists and instruments including Latin American percussion.
Over the years the festival board has also made small contributions toward the upkeep and restoration of some of the historically significant instruments found in the local churches. For more information visit ballarat.com/organs/