Like everything, the Sandgate Youth Festival was a little different this year.
There were guitars, drums, microphones, and an abundance of talented young musicians, but no crowds.
COVID-19 threw a spanner in the works, but festival organisers didn’t let the virus stop the show.
Instead of having a physical audience – bands, solo acts and dance crews entertained nearly 8,000 online viewers with their performances live-streamed.
But in true 2020 fashion, the show wasn’t all smooth sailing, technical glitches meant the audio connection was unreliable at times.
Despite the odds, all 7 finalists completed their sets and routines to wow the judges.
“While this obviously wasn’t ideal, our young performers showed great professionalism and carried on with the show,” festival organiser and local Councillor Jared Cassidy said.
“When the streaming issues first occurred, it would have been easy to call off the rest of the night and avoid any hassle, however, this festival has a strong purpose of providing young artists and performers with a platform, and we couldn’t let their talent go to waste on Saturday night.”
Taking away the top prize of $500 and bragging rights this year was dance crew Fifth Dynasty.
An impressive feat considering the girl group is the first ever dance act to enter the Sandgate Youth Festival.
Tabitha Lee, Anouk Brown, Jack Sweeney Music, Duck Egg Blue, Joe Beveridge and Simian Sick made up the other six finalists this year.
Last year’s winners TEN12 also took to the stage as the headline act, bringing the house down with some killer originals.
“Getting on with the show was more important than ever, given the COVID-19 pandemic has already taken so much away from young local artists this year,” festival organiser Brendon Hofmeier said.
“We can’t wait to be back in 2021 with a bigger and better Sandgate Youth Festival and to bolster this event as a tradition for many years to come.”
For more information and to watch this year’s performances click here.