Flash mob surprises Albany councillors

By Michael Roberts | posted on March 6, 2020

IT IS not often local council meetings are packed to the rafters, and even more unusual when those in attendance stand up mid-proceedings to deliver a surprise choir performance.

But that is exactly what happened during last week’s City of Albany Council meeting when local group AboutFACE choir staged a flash mob.

For those who have never witnessed a flash mob first hand, it’s a seemingly random act, such as a dance or singing performance, carried out in a public place.

AboutFACE sang a stirring rendition of Swahili song Wana Baraka, with councillors, general members of the public and media all sitting quietly in appreciation of the mesmerising tune.

Formed in 2013, AboutFACE offers vocal development and performance opportunities for young people living in the Great Southern.

City of Albany Mayor Dennis Wellington congratulated the group on their “fantastic” presentation.

“In my 20 years on Council that’s the first time I’ve ever seen a flash mob at Council,” he said.

“Well done, it was a terrific exercise.”

AboutFACE weren’t just there to flex their skills however, with the choir seeking funding for a July tour of Europe where they have been invited to represent Australia at the International Youth Music Festival in Bratislava.

As part of the trip, AboutFACE plans to engage with choir specialists in Vienna to develop the group’s talent.

“To best represent the City of Albany, AboutFACE needs to up skill,” Tour Development Officer Bethany Findlay said.

“We have exhausted the development opportunities here in WA.”

With About FACE’s European tour costing just over $300,000, the group asked City of Albany for a $14,000 contribution.

Ms Findlay said any support would be a worthy investment, with the choir looking to partner with the City for 2026 bicentennial celebrations.

“As the next generation of Albany citizens we are uniquely placed to be part of and potentially lead the creative components of the bicentenary,” she said.

“Consider investing in the youth of your city.”