Ukulele players get their strum on

Tiny instrument attracts big interest

JO MCKENZIE-MCLEAN
Last updated 17:15 17/06/2014
Shannon Kelliher
JO McKENZIE-McLEAN/Fairfax NZ
Cool Az Kids ukulele player Shannon Kelliher, 8, of Alexandra, and Mike Tutty, of Clyde, were among the young and old playing at a shindig in Alexandra.

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The ukulele phenomenon is spreading across Central Otago with young and old strumming together at a "shindig" in Alexandra.

Ukulele teacher Barry "Baz" Bemrose, of Ukes in Thyme, led the performance at theh weekend with a packed room of players from two Alexandra ukulele groups, LX Ukes and Ukes in Thyme, as well as players from Lauder Ukes and Aspiring Ukes, from Wanaka.

There was also a performance by Cool Az Kids, made up of pupils from four primary schools in the area.

Shannon Kelliher, 8, said she had been taking private lessons from Baz to help overcome her stage fright.

"I have been having private lessons with Baz because I get a little bit of stage fright. It's really fun - learning new chords and having fun."

Tansy Kerrisk, 10, said the group Cool Az Kids started last year.

"You have got four fingers and four strings so it's easy to play and there are lots of cool chords to learn."

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