Lantern parade project 'on song'

(L to R) Grace Jane, Ruth Lusk, Robyn van Haren, John Lusk, Ida Bruno and Alma Gibson work on their lantern parade project. (Grace and Alma are the founding members of Laurieton’s Sing Australia chapter.)
(L to R) Grace Jane, Ruth Lusk, Robyn van Haren, John Lusk, Ida Bruno and Alma Gibson work on their lantern parade project. (Grace and Alma are the founding members of Laurieton’s Sing Australia chapter.)

THE construction team belonging to Laurieton’s Sing Australia chapter turned up at the Laurieton United Services Club this past week to construct some lantern miracles as its contribution to the Camden Haven Music Festival’s celebration of its fifteenth year of existence.

This very first lanterns-on-the-river parade will launch on the evening of Saturday, May 1, 2010. Aquanaughts and land-’lubbers’ are all invited. The ‘construction team’ was amazed when confronted by large and amazing models of a kingfish, a dolphin, a dragon (yes, a dragon), a sea turtle, a shark and a spouting whale that appears to have a smile. How did fellow mortals construct such masterpieces?

Well, the answer is simple. Maestro Alvena Ferguson was behind it all. She had somehow discovered Claude, a real Frenchman, his Swiss partner, Margrit, and their constantly sleeping brown dog called Samedi (Saturday) who have done this sort of thing before.

Claude and Margrit have cheerfully directed locals in the fine points of lantern making over past weeks. This charming couple met and acquired their skills in Basel, Switzerland, which has a lantern carnival every spring when politicians are frequently portrayed as the public sees them.

But back to Sing Australia’s jellyfish lantern project. Their jellyfish had never been given any serious thought, except as finished products (of wildly variable design) in the minds of exuberant and inexperienced volunteers. And, yes, it was distressing to have brilliant ideas jettisoned by troglodytes!

Members quickly agreed to use foundation ‘rings’ to get the jellyfish started, and were supplied with loads of straight bamboo poles to get the job done.

Have you ever tried to make a circle out of a straight but tapered bamboo pole? Well, they did! Claude soon got them sorted out and they zoomed off in a completely new direction. This pattern of chaotic thought processes, followed by individuals stubbornly doing their own thing, continued throughout the construction phase. Amazingly, three handsomely spotted ‘jellyfish’ emerged in an astonishingly short period. But you should never, never, contemplate hiring Sing Australia’s lantern construction team.

The next phase will be to mount the humble jellyfish on boats, slippery drums, or whatever. Sing Australia’s construction team will continue to apply its wildly creative energies right up until the very last moment when choices run out. However if things go badly wrong, there’ll be truckloads of excuses.

In the meantime, our local Sing Australia chapter will continue to meet in Laurieton’s historic School of Arts Hall from 1.40-4 p.m. on Friday afternoons to enjoy singing together. James Hannah, the Group’s esteemed and widely known conductor, is doing his very best to prepare members for singing with the illustrious Camden Haven Band at the forthcoming Anzac ceremony.

Please feel free to join us in singing and having fun. You can also contact Grace (6559 9496) or John (6559 8193) for more information.