Great Danes laughs its way across regional WA

Great Danes laughs its way across regional WA

Hannah Chambers

Dane Simpson and Rob Edwards captured the hearts and smiles of regional WA as they travelled throughout the state as part of Lotterywest Shows on the Go.

Dane Simpson plays the Didgeridoo in Tom Price. Photo: Karen Cook.

Billed under the name Great Danes and co-presented by Country Arts WA and Act-Belong-Commit, the variety show combined the comedic talents of Wagga Wagga-based Dane Simpson with the soulful voice of Byron Bay musician Rob Edwards as the duo travelled over 4,800 kilometres through the Great Southern, Wheatbelt, Mid West, Pilbara & Kimberley regions.

Dane regaled audiences with yarns about his dad and his childhood in the small town of Walgett, while Rob serenaded crowds with his sultry vocals, singing a mix of his own original music and a few classic covers.

There was plenty of rivalry between Dane and Rob over who could get more crowd participation. Early in the tour, Dane riled up audiences into a series of dance-offs while Rob encouraged crowds to join him in some community karaoke whenever he belted out Daryl Braithwaite’s iconic Horses.

Posted by York Community Resource Centre on Friday, October 12, 2018

In addition to wowing crowds, Dane and Rob worked with regional communities to choreograph a flash mob dance before some of the shows. The duo guided groups young and old from across the state to perform the emu dance in front of iconic landmarks to the sounds of Nut Bush City Limits.

In York, a dozen members of the local community joined in for the first rehearsal in front of the historic York Town Hall.

In the Wheatbelt town of Perenjori, a young local assisted the touring party with some additional filming and he helped Rob with the editing of the video clip. The flash mob dance was then incorporated into the performance where audience members participated in the dance, but also viewed the recording from their town earlier that day.

Dane & Rob lead children from the local Perenjori primary school in the flash mob dance. Photo: Karen Cook.

Great Danes was supported by Healthway promoting the Act-Belong-Commit mentally healthy initiative. Audience members in each community were encouraged to write a story embodying the spirit of their community, sharing tales of laughter and times when people came together in support of their neighbours.

In York, one community member committed to helping their new neighbour clean up their garden. In Katanning, an audience member shared that they were raising funds to support a young member of their community with medical expenses.

Participating in the community and helping out those around you is a simple way to increase wellbeing, by strengthening and developing connections between community members.

Dane prepares for an interview before the show in Karratha. Photo: Great Danes.

“Awesome, love the humour, the didge, the dance, the songs, the whole kit & kaboodle in fact! Please come back this way again.” – Lesley B, Katanning

“Great show, great message cheers for the laughs and music.” – Adam, Karratha

Dane and Rob with Perenjori CRC’s Christinia Laue at the Perenjori Geoff Trot Memorial Park. Photo: Karen Cook.

Dane and Rob pose with members of the Derby community on the final show of the tour. Photo: Karen Cook.

Dane and Rob jam with local musician Ray Edney in Carnarvon. Photo: Karen Cook.

Lotterywest Shows on the Go returns in 2019, taking circus spectacular People Purple Show and the awe-inspiring family show Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo across regional WA.

If you’re looking for tips on how to stay mentally healthy and active in your local community, visit the Act-Belong-Commit website.

 

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