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Stars are on the rise in our Western Downs

14 December 2015

Dreaming big and shooting for the stars is something a number of former and current Western Downs residents have turned into reality with many stepping out in the spotlight on national and global stages. From actors to authors, and musicians to sport stars, they all share a common thread with roots here in our region:

  • Local boy Jarryd James recently took home an ARIA for Best Pop Release 2015 with proud mum watching on from her home in Dalby;
  • For years the Rugby League season has seen families, friends, and locals tune in to cheer on players who were once tackling on our home turf and wearing our local jerseys with pride;
  • The likes of Chinchilla’s Pete Murray, Meandarra’s Dean Ray, and Dalby’s Mark O’Shea continue to grow their fan base as they tour around the country and the world sharing their music;
  • Away from the Pop and Country music scene, Jayson Gillham is one of the most highly regarded pianists all around the world;
  • Dalby born Margot Robbie has exploded on the Hollywood scene starring alongside the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Will Smith, with Chinchilla Director George Miller taking home an Oscar for ‘Happy Feet’.

You never know where you will come across the work of one of our very own; reading an award winning Novel, admiring a photograph in a magazine, or singing along to the radio.

Western Downs Regional Council Mayor Ray Brown said that people often make the mistake of associating regional towns with limited opportunities.  The achievements and worldwide recognition across so many industries by a vast number of our residents would prove cynics otherwise.

“I believe one of our townships biggest assets is the experience and dedication of our teachers, coaches, and mentors and the incredible support of our communities,” he said.

“These values are reinforced with our celebrities often quoted affectionately referring to their hometowns, how their careers began, and how their passions were nurtured and supported.

“It is important to celebrate the achievements of these people, not only to recognise their hard work and commitment but also as motivation for the generations to come.

“The Western Downs region is abundant with young people that are already showing signs of greatness in so many different facets and I look forward to the talent that will undoubtedly hail from our region for generations to come.

“Our home grown ‘Superstars’ are proof that despite how big your town is; no dream is too big.”

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