Bundanoon DanceFest 2020 CANCELLED

5th - 8th June 2020

In the face of current developments with the COVID 19 pandemic the Bush Traditions committee has agreed that discretion is the better part of valour and hence that the Bundanoon DanceFest be abandoned for 2020. This is an unfortunate turn of events.

Looking forward to meeting again in Bundanoon for the DanceFest in 2021.

Let's take the IST out of SOCIAL DISTANCING

National Folk Festival 2020 CANCELLED

Easter 2020

Despite the cancellation of the NFF the preparation of the Bush Traditions Folio of collected tunes for the morning sessions in the Session Bar went ahead and the 2020 Book is available for download and printing. All the tunes have been uploaded to the Bush Traditions WIKI. Here is a list of the new ones to help you identify them.

BINALONG - A Pop-Up Gathering

28th Feb – 1st March 2020

It went very well. Participants were very happy with the weekend.

About 70 people turned up. The whole weekend happened in sunshine with light breezes and temperatures in the high 20s and low 30s. Could not ask for better.

There was a good dance component with three workshops throughout Saturday and one on Sunday. Four sets danced on Saturday night. Dance continued on Sunday. The feedback from dancers was positive. The hall has a good floor, it's sprung and solid to dance on. The music provided by David and Kathy Potter was very much appreciated by the dancers.

The musicians also had a good time. Musicians gathered in the Cafe on Queen throughout both days and in the Pub of an evening. The Cafe has a room out the back, separate from the Cafe proper, which which holds 20 or so musicians. It has a sense of spaciousness and good light and sits in a garden with some gum trees providing shade. Coffee, cakes, hamburgers, and steak sandwiches were available. The owners of the Cafe on Queen did a brisk trade and we have been invited back. Late on Sunday they were seen kicking back with a cup of tea.

The Binalong Hotel provided a good session space on Friday and Saturday nights. The Pub provided a good meal and seemed happy to have us.

Participants provided donations totalling ~ $1250 to the bushfire bucket. Distribution underway.

In summary the weekend was:
welcoming, low key, relaxed / laid back gave participants an opportunity to engage and contribute in whatever way they wished in a rural landscape inexpensive much appreciated by participants

Here are a few photos courtesy of David Hunter:

Binalong Hall

Ray Mulligan

And some feedback:

Just wanted to say thank you for organising last weekend's music at Binalong. I had a great time playing and meeting new people, while Allan enjoyed relaxing and reading his book. Great spot for camping, the town had a wonderful feel that was just right for the genre of music, and the cafe owners and pub people were very welcoming.

Great weekend! Now I'm busily learning and playing along with tunes I'd recorded on my phone. However, I'd better stick with my aim to learn tunes from this area. So thanks for the good weekend.

Thank you all so much for a great mini festival. We were sorry we had to leave Sunday. David & Kathy, the Saturday Night Dance was terrific, as was the workshop, and a credit to you both. A fabulous programme. The music, of course, was wonderful. A big thank you to all the musicians. It was Noel’s first folk/dance event ever and, apart from being dead on his feet, he thoroughly enjoyed it.

The Gathering 2019

The annual Bush Traditions Gathering happened on the Labor Day Long Weekend October 4th to 7th.

The programme included:

  • The Music of Bill Case with Rob Willis and John Harpley
  • Songs of Australia Dave Johnson launching his expanded collection of Australian Songs
  • Who was Thomas Edward Bulch with Alan Swift
  • Yarn Space with Alan Swift
  • Poetry Whenever
  • Slow Sessions with Kerry Doherty (each morning)
  • Sessions (various times and places throughout the weekend)
  • Music of John Spencer, with Carole Helman
  • Verse of John O’Brien in Song by Marion Haigh
  • A Musical Ovation for Kath McMahon with Monty 
  • Joe Yates Tunes with Tony Stuart
  • The play reading The Castle of Andalusia with Dave Johnson
  • And with crafts being featured we had:

    • Cabbage Tree Hats with Sue Brian;
    • Using Eucalyptus Leaves to Dye Scarves with Sue Hays
    • Yarnin’ Workshop with Linda Swift.


    Click the image above for the 2020 Australian Heritage Dance calendar, which is generated by Brian Samuels.

    Online version of John Merediths collection of portraits and the text of his book.

    Heather Clarke has joined the organising team at Bush Traditions. Her knowledge of early Australian dance is remarkable and can be explored at her web site.

    nfsaReal Folk Videos
    Some classic bush music now on YouTube

    concAnglo Concertina Tutor
    A set of bush tunes arranged with fingering and all for Anglo Concertina players.

    This website is maintained and developed by David Johnson.
    Suggestions and contributions for inclusion welcome.