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John O'Brien Bush Festival
Wed 14th - Sun 18th March 2007

By Liane Sayer-Roberts
Posted Thursday, March 1, 2007

In the historic Riverina town of Narrandera, the John O’Brien Bush Festival boasts an impressive five-day line up of Aussie-Irish bush poetry, music, dance, art and humour.

Forty five separate performances will take place, including two main concerts (6 and 11 hours respectively).


The festival takes its name from the famous poet John O’Brien, who wrote much of his work while living in Narrandera in the early 1900s. As well as celebrating all things country, the festival honours the rural pioneering heritage of the Irish settlers celebrated in John O’Brien’s poetry and incorporates St Patrick’s Day celebrations.

The annual festival is in its 13th year and close to 7,000 people are expected to attend this year.

The action-packed program includes:

  • Some of the biggest names in bush poetry, including Warren Fahey, John Warner, Frank Daniel, Noel Stallard, Gregory North and Geoffrey Graham;
  • The Boree Log Bush Dance, held in a tiny country hall 22kms out of town, with dances called by the energetic local Swag n’ Billy Bush Band;
  • St Patrick’s Day celebrations, including Irish dancing, stews and sing-a-longs, limericks and performances by Bahntre, Celtic Larrikans, Dadscrampy, and Will of the Wood;
  • Buskers, pub sessions, a street concert, pavement fair & parade; and
  • Poet’s breakfasts, plays and concerts based on bush lore.
Narrandera is centrally located on the Murrumbidgee River in the Riverina, at the junction of the Sturt and Newell National Highways, 575km west of Sydney and 430km north of Melbourne. Narrandera has a population of 5,000.

For more information visit the Festival's web site.

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