A spectacular evening of music, comedy, local flair and fundraising ended with a standing ovation by more than 200 people at Laguna Village Hall on Saturday night.
Music 4 Mental Health was created by local resident Rosie Hansen following the traumatic summer of bushfires in the Wollombi Valley.
Compered by comedian and actor Alan Glover, the non-stop combination of duets, solos, Broadway blockbusters and operatic arias kept the audience enraptured.
Award-winning entertainer Darryl Lovegrove performed in breathtaking father-daughter duets with his talented daughter, Harmony, while each also delivered solos of impact.
Surprise guest Dame Edna Everage had to deliver her message via video but wished she could be at Laguna Hall with her loved 'Laguna Possums' (see the post below).
Wollombi's a cappella group, Rise, showcased the four-part harmonies of Sandi Harvey (bass), Corina Hassett (baritone), Bec Smiley (lead) and Cath Maguire (tenor), stimulating spontaneous group singalongs.
Wollombi's Community Choir, led by Andrew Ross, with Steve Gidney on keyboard, featured a dozen heart-warming voices.
An entire audience stood to sing the finale of Nessun Dorma after tears of happiness had flowed at the beauty of Somewhere Over the Rainbow and much, much more.
The event raised more than $5000 for Everymind, a Newcastle-based institute dedicated to improving mental ill-health and suicide prevention.
The great success of this evening created such enthusiasm that Ms Hansen said she's already been asked for a follow up next year.
"I'm gratefully gobsmacked at the enthusiastic support of our community," she said.
Supported by husband, Charlie Kessler, a key member of the Laguna Fire Brigade for over 11 years, Ms Hansen said the fundraiser is exceptionally meaningful as some areas of Laguna and Wollombi were badly scarred by this summer's bushfires, resulting in ongoing challenges for many.