Honk! Oz returns to Wollongong in January as a prelude to the Illawarra Folk Festival

GOOD FUN: Linsey Pollak performing during the 2017 Honk! Oz festival - it returns to the streets of Wollongong from January 11 to 13. Picture: Adam McLean
GOOD FUN: Linsey Pollak performing during the 2017 Honk! Oz festival - it returns to the streets of Wollongong from January 11 to 13. Picture: Adam McLean

A side-show of the Illawarra Folk Festival, Honk! Oz will return to the streets of Wollongong for the fourth year in a row from January 11 to 13.

Musicians young and old can take part with community participation a key feature of the three-day event. Free workshops will be held as a warm up to the festival on Wednesday January 10 at the Conservatorium of Music and Wollongong Art Gallery.

The Hoot! Pickup Band workshop is for intermediate players and up, and most suited to instruments that don’t need to be plugged in. Players will learn to play repertoire arranged by American saxophonist Ken Field as a group, with the option to perform the works in public.

The Con Artists will be among the bands performing around Wollongong for free during the Honk! Oz festival from January 11 to 13. Picture: Adam McLean

The Con Artists will be among the bands performing around Wollongong for free during the Honk! Oz festival from January 11 to 13. Picture: Adam McLean

The Kids Honk! Band workshop is suitable for children aged around nine and up or have played in a primary school band for over a year. Participants will learn tunes by ear though should have an understanding of music notation, with workshops on January 10 and 11 and the option to also perform in public.

The main festival includes visiting bands from Perth, Lismore, Sydney, Melbourne and local musicians from around the Illawarra.

It has been modelled on similar events in the US and South America and named after the “Honk! Festival of Activist Street Bands” movement. Honk! Oz was brought to life in 2014 to celebrate public spaces while blurring the lines between audience members and participants.

Honk! precedes the Illawarra Folk Festival which will see 142 acts perform at Bulli Showgrounds – including Honk! performers – from January 18 to 21.

To register for the Honk! workshops visit www.honkfest.org