Mona Foma Launceston looks likely to get state government funding

NEW EVENT: Mona Foma has been a staple in Hobart's social calendar during summer and now the festival is set to make its mark on Launceston in 2018.
NEW EVENT: Mona Foma has been a staple in Hobart's social calendar during summer and now the festival is set to make its mark on Launceston in 2018.

An announcement of funding support for Mona Foma events in Northern Tasmania from the state government has been hinted at by local stakeholders.

Founder David Walsh announced his intention to bring the iconic festival to the North in July but had yet to secure the government’s support.

If approved a free, pop-up event would be held in Launceston next year, as well as a Hobart festival and if all went well the full festival could be here in 2019.

Junction Arts Festival chair Liz Frankham said if the move was collaborative and enabling it would gather lots of support.

“I feel strongly that the MoFo move is an opportunity for the development and support of northern arts and design talent and skills development for the ongoing cultural development in the North,” she said.

 “Junction has reached out to MoFo and expressed interest in collaboration and resource sharing for mutual benefit.”

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Tourism Northern Tasmania chief executive Chris Griffin said he was a strong supporter of MoFo.

“Such a successful arts and music festival not only provides a compelling reason for visitors to attend, but also great opportunities for more jobs and skills development for our local artists, creatives, cafes, accommodation providers and related enterprises. All of which increase the livability of our city and its appeal as a destination of Tasmania,” he said.

An opportunity to host MoFo would provide “wonderful” economic and social returns, said City of Launceston events committee chair Alderman Danny Gibson.

“Our cultural scene is made up of passionate and hardworking practitioners, champions and volunteers,” Ald Gibson said.

“An offering such as this, strengthens our arts scene, adds to our cultural branding and promises growth and innovation of our liveable Launceston.”

Launceston Chamber of Commerce executive officer Neil Grose agreed.

“This event will lift the cultural and economic vitality of Launceston and show a glimpse of what can be possible in the longer term,” Mr Grose said.