The story of the Eureka Stockade has been told in many ways – through history books, stories, films and song.
These winter school holidays, the Eureka Centre will continue this tradition by presenting a children’s workshop exploring the art of storytelling through song.
Ballarat’s Justin ‘Hap’ Hayward joins the Eureka Centre for its upcoming Songcraft Workshop, where he will share his incredible knowledge of song writing with budding young musicians.
Best known as the lead singer and lyricist of The Dead Salesmen, Justin will introduce children to rhyming, melody, song structure, rehearsal and performance.
Justin, who remembers a time when music wasn’t as valued in Ballarat as it is today, said he believes it is important to foster storytelling in young people.
“I think what can happen is, the older you get, the less value is placed on storytelling. So, it is important to nourish and encourage, and develop children as storytellers so they can continue telling those stories when they grow up,” he said.
“When we were at school, we considered ourselves outsiders and there was a small group of people making music. What I love about today is that those barriers seem to have broken down and music is taken more seriously. There’s more opportunities in most of the schools that I know of, particularly in Ballarat.”
Justin, now a teacher, believes that every child is a natural lyricist.
“Children are naturals at coming up with great lyrics,” he said.
“Many times, as a teacher, you wish you had written down a simple statement a child had made because it was poetic and honest and interesting or even poignant.
“I just think this [Songcraft Workshop] is a great opportunity to get those lines down. A good line is the equivalent to a good musical riff and kids come up with them all the time.”
The Songcraft Workshop will run from 10am-4pm at the Eureka Centre on Monday 1 July, with family and friends invited to attend the 3.45pm performance before taking their children home with their newly-made instruments.
The workshop costs $55 (plus booking fee) to attend, and includes all materials and food throughout the day.