The WWAF committee thanks everyone who attended our 2022 Festival. Attendees from near and far enjoyed four days of engaging, immersive and thought-provoking events. We look forward to welcoming guests back to the event over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June 2023.

Australian Romantic and Classical Orchestra

Tickets are now sold out for this event and we are taking names for a wait list incase there are any cancellations.

Apologies for any inconvenience caused.

Media Release


Woodend Winter Arts Festival 2022

Friday 10 June – Monday 13 June

The Woodend Winter Arts Festival (WWAF) will deliver a thought provoking and engaging program of events when it returns to the charming village of Woodend over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend, from 10-13 June, 2022.

The event will kick off with a vibrant fireworks display featuring free live performances. Other highlights include two incredible concerts by world-renowned ensembles – Ensemble Gombert and the Australian Romantic Classic Orchestra. A fascinating discussion with best-selling author Sarah Krasnostein, a political dissection with Sean Kelly and the screening of ‘A little bit Mongolian‘ a film by award winning documentary film maker Michael Dillon, accompanied by a harmonic singing session with Dean Frenkel.

According to Artistic Director and Founder of the Festival, Dr Jacqueline Ogeil, this year’s event will run at a reduced capacity, with bigger and bolder things planned for 2023.

“The festival committee made the decision to play it safe this year and present a scaled-back version of the event. This decision was made in light of reduced venues due to renovation works, along with the ongoing Covid situation and the risk involved with both our talent and guests potentially having to cancel at the last minute.”

“That being said, we still have a fantastic line-up of events, designed to cater for the young and old and everyone in between. Attendees can expect to have their minds challenged, whilst also having the opportunity to experience world-class classical music in Woodend. We also have our much-loved free community fireworks event happening, which includes an expanded program of free performances,” said Dr Ogeil.

The WWAF 2022 Program includes the following events: 

Fireworks display & live free performances

WWAF will kick off with a vibrant fireworks display at Woodend’s Buffalo Stadium. This free event will be a fun evening out for the whole family and will include live entertainment from the a cappella vocal ensemble Melbourne Octet and Japanese drummers Wadaiko Kindo, various food vans will also be onsite, selling tasty treats on the night.

When: Friday 10 June, from 5:00pm – 7:00pm

Where: Buffalo Stadium, Woodend

Tickets: entry is free and no bookings are required

The Sounds of Vienna with the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra

The Sounds of Vienna will fill Woodend’s St Ambrose Church when the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra performs Schubert’s Octet. Attendees will be transported to the early days of the 19th century Vienna as this highly acclaimed ensemble performs what is recognised as Schubert’s finest works..

When: Saturday 11 June, 2:30pm

Where: St Ambrose Catholic Church, Woodend

Tickets:  $45 Full Price / $40 concession / $25 Child

Words & Ideas: “Not waving, drowning” with Sarah Krasnostein

WWAF’s words and ideas program, established by Sheila and Don Drummond, continues this year with best-selling author Sarah Krasnostein leading a fascinating discussion about the mental health crisis in Australia. Krasnostein argues that we live in a society that often punishes vulnerability, but shows we have the resources to mend a broken system. She will examine whether the system can be fixed, and whether the patterns of the past will persist into the future.

When: Sunday 12 June at 10.30am

Where: Community Centre, Woodend

Tickets: $20 per person

The Art of a cappella: Ensemble Gombert

Regular performers at WWAF and recognised as Australia’s finest chamber choir, Ensemble Gombert will delight the audience with a selection a capella classics from throughout the centuries, ranging from Bach through to Brahms.

When: Sunday 12 June at 3pm

Where: St Ambrose Church, Woodend

Tickets: $45 Full Price / $40 concession / $25 Child

A Little Bit Mongolian: Film & Throat Singing Performance

Award winning local filmmaker Michael Dillon will introduce his international award-winning film A Little Bit Mongolian. The film captures the story of a 12-year-old Australian horse rider who dares to race with local Mongolian children, winning over the respect of the locals and in turn becoming a little bit Mongolian. Michael will be joined by Dean Frenkel, who will wow the crowd with a display of harmonic throat singing. The audience will then be invited to become a little bit Mongolian themselves as Dean talks them through the art of throat singing, encouraging them to see what their own voices are capable of.

When: Monday 13 June, 10.30am & 2.30pm

Where: St Ambrose Catholic Church

Tickets: $35 per person 

Words & Ideas: Election Dissection with Sean Kelly and Sally Warhaft

Sean Kelly, author of The Game: A Portrait of Scott Morrison, a columnist with The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, and former adviser to Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd, will be in candid and entertaining discussion with acclaimed broadcaster, writer and anthropologist Sally Warhaft. The audience is encouraged to join in, with plenty of opportunities for questions.

When: Monday 13 June at 10:30am

Where: Community Centre, Woodend

Tickets: $20 per person

Ticket are on sale via the Woodend Winter Arts Festival website woodendwinterartsfestival.org.au

MEDIA CONTACT: Please direct any queries to WWAF publicist Madeleine Blake, MBPR, madeleine@mbpr.co | 0400 262 505

UPDATE – change of date

Due to the new restriction, Melbourne people (both audience & performers!) won’t be able to come to regional areas for the Queen’s Birthday weekend. We will therefore postpone the festival to the two weekends in July and August, as indicated in our contingency plans press release and recent update on Facebook.

These dates are 10-11 July and 7-8 August, and events will be allocated to those dates. We are working with artists and performers to find the dates that suit their availability.

Every ticket-holder will receive emails about the events they have already booked for, and if the new event dates don’t suit you, there are options for you to refund your ticket or have it as a credit for 2022.

As soon as we have more from each individual performer we will update our website program and all our social media.

Thanks for your patience as we get things updated!

2019 Program launch 2nd April

The full 2019 program will be launched on Tuesday 2nd April with tickets available that day. An exciting and eclectic lineup of national and international artists awaits you! Ensure you are signed up for our newsletter to be the first to see the program!