The ancient art of town crying will be alive and ringing in the Redlands on Saturday 3 September as the nation’s best criers descend on the city for the 25th National Town Crier Championships.
The competition will be held as part of RedFest, our city’s annual spring festival, at Norm Price Park, Redlands Showground 2-4 September.
Redland City’s official town crier and local personality Max Bissett said he was like a kid at Christmas busily preparing for the special silver anniversary event.
“I think it’s marvelous! I am really looking forward to hosting this event,” he said.
“When the Mayor asked me a couple of years ago if we could host the national championships I just jumped at the chance.”
A town crier since 2005, Mr Bissett is often seen at local events promoting the Redlands and all it has to offer.
“As a town crier you are an ambassador for your city in a sense and help to promote it and showcase it to other areas,” he said.
“Competitors will perform two cries, one about their home town and another one about how great the Redlands is.
“I’ve heard some of the cries and they are impressive so I am really looking forward to hearing the final products on the day, as well as three special guest performers from New Zealand, along with Australia’s oldest town crier, 90-year-old John Stevenson.”
About 20 members of the Ancient and Honourable Association of Town Criers from across Australia are expected to compete for the title of Champion of Champions and will be judged on loudest cry, best cry, best dressed and best scroll, and best dressed partner.
Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the Redlands was privileged to host the 25th National Town Crier Championships.
“We are thrilled that the Redlands has attracted the talents and experience of four special guest judges including Spencer Howson, ABC Radio; Pam Tamblyn, Tamblyn Models Australia; Noelene Hill, Head of Wardrobe – Queensland Ballet; and Mark Overell, former Ipswich town crier of 25 years,” she said.
“The guest judges will evaluate contenders on poise, bearing, confidence, sustained volume, costumes, inflection and word content.
“Town criers are known for their volume and Redlanders are known for their patriotism so this event really is the perfect fit for our city, as it gives everyone the chance to hear loud and clear that the Redlands is the best place to live, visit and do business.
“I know the town criers will have no trouble coming up with a Redlands cry; all you have to do is look around at the beauty of the city.
“It is even more fitting that the championships will be held as part of RedFest, an event that has been part of the fabric of the Redlands for more than 60 years.”
Date: Saturday 3 September 2016, 9am – 3pm
Location: RedFest, Norm Price Park, Redlands Showground