Young talent set to shine

Ready to rock: Alex Balint, Hugh Balint, Libby Davies, Grace Mae and Nathan Davey from Grace Mae & The Red Bandanas will perform at the KidsFest opening event and finale.
Ready to rock: Alex Balint, Hugh Balint, Libby Davies, Grace Mae and Nathan Davey from Grace Mae & The Red Bandanas will perform at the KidsFest opening event and finale.

Even though the average age of their band members is just over 13, Grace Mae & The Red Bandanas is already making an impact on the local music scene.

Winners of the State Rock Band Competition in 2017, the band went on to win the national competition for Best Original Song in 2018 and also gained third place in the Wollongong Battle of the Bands (under 18s) earlier this year, where they won the opportunity to record an original song.

They have played at many gigs and events around the Illawarra, Grace has released her own EP titled 'Not Today' and they have also supported Australian country music artists Maddi Lyn and Aimee Hannan.

The band comprises Grace Mae, 13, lead vocals, Nathan Davey, 13, drums, Alex Balint, 15, rhythm guitar, Libby Davies, 14, bass guitar and Hugh Balint, 13, keys.

Grace Mae & The Red Bandanas, who play a mixed range of pop and country pop, met and came together as a band through the Music Bus program nearly three years ago.

KidsFest is giving you a chance to hear these talented young performers live on stage during the opening event - All Aboard the KidsFest Express on Sunday, May 19 from 10am-3pm and on Saturday, May 25 at the KidsFest Finale at Killalea Reflections Reserve from noon-4pm.

"Highlighting youth performers and inspiring young would-be-musicians is very much what KidsFest is about," KidsFest Shellharbour artistic director, Ann Lehmann-Kuit said.

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Grace Mae.

Grace Mae.

Grace Mae will be coordinating artists for both events and will host the live performance stage.

"I have been performing as part of KidsFest since I was eight years old," Grace said. "I am very excited to be more involved this year and to be a part of these great events for kids."

Grace Mae & The Red Bandanas will be joined by other accomplished young artists including Dear Violet, Kayla Shea, Minna, Piper Farrell and Jai Ellevsen.

"It's been a great opportunity to involve my own band as well as other rising music stars in the Illawarra," Grace said. "At the closing event The Red Bandana's drummer Nathan and I will introduce some songs from my forthcoming EP titled 'Numb'."

Come along and support these young musicians and enjoy all that KidsFest Shellharbour has to offer with free events and activities for the whole family. Check out the program or head to kidsfestshellharbour.com.au.