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Emergence Creative Festival returns to Margaret River after two-year COVID-19 hiatus

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Creative Corner personnel Lucy Belbin, Mia Burley, Anita Pettit, Mat Lewis, Jon Ricciardone and Sean Hsu.
Camera IconCreative Corner personnel Lucy Belbin, Mia Burley, Anita Pettit, Mat Lewis, Jon Ricciardone and Sean Hsu. Credit: Shots by Ovis

A grassroots industry festival for the creative community will be revived next year after languishing during the pandemic.

The resurrection of Margaret River’s Emergence Creative Festival was announced last week after organisers said they wanted to keep the renowned “anti-conference” alive despite the festival’s multi-year cancellation during the peak of COVID-19.

Festival director Anita Pettit told the Times everyone involved in the Creative Corner was thrilled at the prospect of Emergence returning.

“The Emergence Creative Festival has always been a convergence of diverse minds, a celebration of innovation, and a journey into the extraordinary,” she said.

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Emergence was previously a unique offering on the Margaret River festival circuit, bringing workers in the commercial creative industries across the country together in the region for a series workshops, discussions, live events and networking opportunities.

During its reign, Emergence lured big names including Google Zoo’s chief creative Dave Bowman, Facebook Creative Shop’s creative services lead Claire Davidson and New York’s serial tech entrepreneur Bill Cromie, as well as former Mamamia Women’s Network video content creators Briony Benjamin and Clare Gerber.

Emergence was also previously credited as an incubator for other key events as well as opportunities in the creative industries for professionals based in the Margaret River region.

Ms Pettit said the festival’s reinvigorated schedule was slated for March 19 to 22 next year, with the theme “Time to Make Space”.

Creative Corner chair Jon Ricciardone said the chance to fly the festival flag again was welcomed after investing time, energy and money in 2021 and 2022’s cancelled events.

“To say we are excited to be back in 2024 is somewhat of an understatement,” he said.

“Emergence Creative attracts creative thinkers from all industries and backgrounds.

“We love that it’s not limited or focused on one specific profession, but provides something for everyone,” Ricciardone said.

“It’s going to be incredible to bring back the festival to the region.”

The full event line-up is to be released in coming weeks, but the festival has advertised for expressions of interest for partners, collaborators and sponsors.

To get involved, visit emergencecreative.com.

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