World premiere ukulele excitement at Valla Beach

British ukulele virtuoso Samantha Muir will be live at Valla Beach.

THE Valla Beach Holiday Park’s grand old Woolshed is about to become the venue for two spectacular events.

The first is the world premiere of David John Roche’s Ukulele Concerto, which will be performed by The Australian Ukulele Orchestra and British virtuoso Samantha Muir live in concert.

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Musicians from as far afield as South Australia, Tasmania and Queensland are flying in to attend the performance, while locals are being offered tickets at discount rates.

The premiere is scheduled for Saturday 14 October 6.45pm, with discounted tickets costing $35 at the door.

The event will showcase ukulele music unlike any heard before.

“Forget Tiny Tim and a certain ex-Prime Minister’s rendition of April Sun in Cuba on a tourist toy instrument – in this concert highly skilled musicians will be playing elegant live music that caresses the ears and enchants the senses, using a range of finely tuned instruments designed by the world’s top luthiers,” said organiser Cathy Welsford.
Samantha Muir is an award-winning musical genius from the Royal College of Music, London.

She was the first person to be awarded a PhD in Classical Ukulele and also plays rajão and machete, the forerunners of ukulele, as well as classical guitar.

“Dr Muir’s achievements are legendary,” Cathy said.

“In addition to performing and teaching at festivals throughout the United Kingdom, she is a renowned composer who has published numerous original pieces, arrangements and books.

“Samantha will also present a superb solo set in this concert.”

The Australian Ukulele Orchestra showcases the inspiring skills of nine of Australia’s best east coast players.

They present an amazing array of musicianship that includes ukulele variations from soprano to baritone, as well as vocals, bass, banjo and percussion.

The Orchestra is Sydney-based and its musical director, Ian Porter, creates technically challenging, complex, multi-part, arrangements of usually well-known pieces so audiences can experience a range of thrilling high quality acoustic music.

The selected pieces span musical history from Renaissance classical to modern pop classics.

In recent years the Orchestra has performed sell-out concerts in Sydney, Newcastle and regional New South Wales including the Orange Regional Conservatorium.

Its current players are Julie Montague, Kyoko Numata, Jenny Massingham, Lyndall Katz, Anne Keogh, Janet Raine, Cynthia Sleight Meyles, Graham Hancock and Ian Porter.

Other lively acts completing the fabulous Saturday evening concert include local band The Wild Women of Anywhere Beach, who will be launching their latest album, Wild Places, and Brisbane’s liveliest band, Mama Juju and the Jam Tarts.

The second Valla Beach event is a Celebrity Concert on Friday 13 October at 7pm that features the local ukulele jazz ensemble Blue Gum Blossom, along with sizzling Melbourne duo Green Fieldz, Newcastle’s sublime Jack n Jel n Mac n Wal Quartet and Valla’s own Snez & Stewart.

Samantha Muir will also play a short set in this concert.

The venue for the concert is the Woolshed with tickets $35 at the door.

Both of these events are part of the Valla Beach Ukulele Camp from 13–16 October 2023.

Visit for more information.

The weekend also includes a free Beach Party Jam Session on South Valla Beach on Sunday 15 October from 12.30pm.

Jam Queen Jackie Anifandis will be flying in from Tasmania to lead the party in beach and surfing songs, accompanied by local and visiting musicians.

No bookings are necessary, just bring your own drink, towel and any instrument you have to join in the fun.

Families welcome.

For more information contact Cathy Welsford on 0417 657 411 or email

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