Kelly Gang dance performance receives Inland Rail sponsorship

A grant from Round 14 of the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) Inland Rail Community Sponsorships and Donations Program has supported the Benalla Art Gallery to stage a new performance, The Last Hoorah as part of the Benalla Festival.

Art by Jacqui Stokdale - Our Sunshine [installation view] 2020, metal and wool knitted by Melinda Christensen, 35 x 31 x 23cm

The $4,000 grant from Inland Rail will support a group of young people aged from 13 to 18 years old to take part in theatrical workshops during the Benalla Festival, culminating in a contemporary public performance of The Last Hoorah, a satirical take on the Kelly Gang, in which a lively bunch of teenage larrikins dance until they drop.

Led by Jacqui Stockdale, the performance relates to her Benalla Art Gallery exhibition The Outlaws’ Inn. Stockdale and artistic collaborators Yumi Umiumare (choreographer), Emma Bathgate (vocalist) and Chelle Destefano (Deaf performer and artist) will host a variety of creative workshops at The Village Art Precinct on Saturday 5 November, and the grand finale will be a performance involving traditional street theatre, Japanese Butoh, costuming, movement and a live ensemble of young voices.

The performance will also be translated for the deaf community by Chelle Destefano through embedded poetic Auslan.

For more information on the event visit the Benalla Art Gallery website.

Round 14 of the Inland Rail Community Sponsorships and Donations Program supported 23 schools, community groups and associations along the Inland Rail alignment with a combined $80,000 of funding, taking total funds awarded by the program to over $930,000.

The latest round of funding is the largest since the Program started in 2019 and takes the total number of organisations receiving funding from the program to 289.

Eric Nash, Benalla Art Gallery Director said:

“The Last Hoorah promises to be a memorable event. It is based on the game of elimination musical chairs, where competition creates mayhem and excitement, and the winner takes all.”

Stephen Jones, Inland Rail Director of Health, Safety and Environment said:

“We are proud to give back to the communities that are home to Inland Rail. The work these organisations do is instrumental to the wellbeing of regional communities.

“I encourage other non-profit groups to lodge their applications for the next round of funding.”

The Inland Rail Community Sponsorships and Donations program offers funding between $1000–$4000 for individuals and organisations in regional areas along the Inland Rail. The funding supports organisations or individuals that contribute to local and regional prosperity, wellbeing, and sustainability.

Applications for the current round of funding close on 31 October 2022.

We encourage you to check your funding eligibility and apply. Please include as much information as you can to tell the story of what you want to achieve and how it will benefit your community.

Check the Community Sponsorships and Donations program page for more information.

To check your eligibility, phone 1800 732 761 or email:

IMAGE: Caption: Jacqui Stockdale, Our Sunshine [installation view] 2020, metal and wool knitted by Melinda Christensen, 35 x 31 x 23cm. Photo: Theresa Harrison Photography