All you need to do is Zing!

From left, Jeannie Marsh, Anny Koelewyn, Rudy van den Bovenkamp. 196886_05

Last year in Monbulk, ZING! Sing in Dutch launched Dutchies of the Dandenongs in collaboration with Dandenong Ranges Music Council (DRMC).

According to Dutchies of the Dandenongs artistic director Jeannie Marsh, it was such a success that they’re doing it again this year.

“This year it will be bigger and better, including a wider range of activities,” she said.

Ms Marsh said the festival celebrated Dutch culture and was held in the Dandenongs due to the large amount of Dutch immigrants who called the area home.

“There is a long connection of Dutch community in the Dandenongs, particularly after the second world war…many people came and set up businesses and lives in the Dandenongs and they’re still there,” she said.

“This celebration, it’s a mixture of celebrating those stories but also these wonderful songs.”

The day will be centred around Dutch choir and band ZING! Sing in Dutch who will be leading and teaching Dutch songs, from current pop songs to old favourites.

There will be workshops and activities all day, a one man band competition judged by Rudy the One Man Band, and a public performance at 4pm.

Ms Marsh said anybody could take part and being Dutch wasn’t a prerequisite.

“Music is an universal language and ZING! are such engaging and delightful performers and perform with such energy that everybody has a smile on their face,” she said.

“Rudy is Dutch Australian and he got interested in this tradition of one man band, which is very popular in the Netherlands, so he’s running a little competition for kids to come along and have a go at making their own one man band.”

Dutchies of the Dandenongs at 70 Main Road, Monbulk, and surrounds on Saturday 7 September will be a celebration of all things Dutch.

A $5 registration fee for adults gives patrons access to all activities.

Everybody who registers to participate has a chance to win a double pass to Tesselaar Tulip Festival’s Dutch Weekend.

“There is a strong Dutch community in the hills area, and we would love to see you at this event – this one is for you,” Ms Marsh said.