AS Catherine Alcorn's divine voice and sexy Bette Midler style saturated Noosa's small and practical event space, one had to wonder at the clout of Noosa Longweekend folk to entice such top acts.
After all, what does one relatively small, unadorned stage at Noosa Junction mean to the likes of international performers and the cream of Australian artistic talent? Judging by another long line of top-class cultural performances, it means a great deal.
A live performance by Catherine Alcorn from her show, The Divine Miss Bette (direct from Sydney), together with a performance by Sunshine Coast cellist Louise King as part of a contemporary dance performance Dancing with Bach, performed by Lucid Dance Theatre (Brisbane) at the 11th Noosa Longweekend festival launch on Thursday gave a taste of what is to come.
Noosa Longweekend president Simon Gamble said he believed the festival's ability to maintain an increasingly high standard and evolve across a broad range of cultural experiences was a big attraction for artists.
This year Sunshine Coast locals Sam and Xanthe Coward promise to stretch the boundaries with their performance of Erotique.
The play has finished a sell-out season at the Sydney Fringe Festival, where it was billed as "a series of poignant vignettes, exploring sex and human context, with an acclaimed original soundtrack by international performer Leah Barclay."
Festival director Ian Mackellar said 11 Queensland premiere events would form part of the festival in 2012, including 'our opening night performance by Australian music diva Debra Byrne with her new show Ripe, an exquisite contemporary dance performance produced especially for the Australian Ballet's 50th anniversary'.
"We have two exclusive Australian events, including a preview of Bruce Beresford's new film, Peace, Love and Misunderstanding, starring Jane Fonda.
"Then there is the absolutely amazing Barbara Streisand impersonator, Steven Brinberg, with his Simply Barbara show direct from New York, and the very first Noosa Book Club with Jennifer Byrne, Mari eke Hardy, Jason Steger, Charlotte Wood and Di Morrissey."
The full festival program, which runs from June 15-24 is out and tickets go on sale today, May 8, for the 10 days and nights of music, theatre, dance, literature, forums, film, food, visual arts and workshops.
Follow the festival at facebook.com/NoosaLongWeekendFestival.