Cabaret shows a hit at Kiama arts festival

There was a fair bit of clowning around in Kiama this weekend, courtesy of the second annual KISS Arts Festival.

Street performers strolled through Hindmarsh Park, bringing much comic relief with their colourful mix of vaudeville, circus, clowning and comedy.

Festival organiser Tamara Campbell said while crowds were not as large as hoped for in the Kiama park, those gathered certainly enjoyed the show.

"Last year it rained, which kept numbers down, and I don't think the heat has helped this year," she said.

"But those who did come really enjoyed themselves and hopefully they go away and tell others about us, so next year the event can really grow."

The open-air cabaret shows, new to this year's festival line-up, were a runaway success.

Hundreds turned up to the Sebel Harbourside courtyard on Friday and Saturday and Jamberoo Pub beer garden on Sunday to enjoy a cool drink, a bite to eat and some internationally acclaimed cabaret performers.

"Our evening cabarets were a real success and something we'd definitely like to continue with," Ms Campbell said.

"They've drawn good crowds and there's been a really good atmosphere at these events."

Also going well are the circus workshops, which continue at Dance Sensations School in Brown Street until January 15.

"These workshops are fantastic for building young people's confidence and their physical agility and ability," Ms Campbell said.

"They're also great fun and a different way for kids aged 4 to 16 to spend a day of their summer holidays.

"As well as the general workshops this year there's a family and adult workshop day for the first time where everyone can come and learn together."

Ms Campbell started the KISS (Kiama International Seaside) Arts Festival last year with fellow performer David Evans. The pair have performed at such festivals internationally and thought the seaside town of Kiama was perfect for such an event.

"There's only about 10 festivals like this in Australia," Ms Campbell said.

"We've spent 17 years working on the European and North American festival circuits, where there are hundreds of these type of events.

"We are trying to bring that fun and culture to Australia, to Kiama in particular, and hope locals and visitors continue to support us."

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