(Photo: Bev Gourlay with husband Aart Schouten).
Every Sunday afternoon from the months of May to October, a small group of top-class singers and instrumentalists come together to perform local concerts on the Sunshine Coast; to help raise profits for local charities and businesses.
The Pleasant Sunday Afternoon Concerts, held in Caloundra, have been pleasing, entertaining and engaging locals for more than 12 years. Part of the heart and soul behind this event is one of the organisers, Bev Gourlay.
Bev was born and raised in Adelaide, South Australia. During her childhood and adolescence she lived for the arts of singing, music and dance. Her love for this soon blossomed further as she was accepted into the University of Adelaide in part of the prestigious Conservatorium of Music where she studied singing and instrumental music and excelled in the piano and vocals program.
Bev moved to the Sunshine Coast in 1997 and has since been an active member of the Buderim and Sunshine Coast Community. To those familiar with attending Buderim’s annual ANZAC day morning service, you may recognise Bev as the singer who each year proudly sings the Australian National Anthem.
Her love of arts and passion for helping others soon expanded into an array of various music concerts, to help raise funds for charities and local services. Bev has helped organise numerous events over the years, including the popular ‘Raise the Roof Concert’ in 2009 and her current ‘Pleasant Sunday Afternoon Concerts’. She has also been actively involved in organizing music concerts with fellow organizer Neil Booth for various local associations; such as the Kawana and Caloundra Seniors Concerts association, World Vision, Caloundra Chorale, Kawana and Maroochydore Uniting Church, Australian Redcross, Lifeline, Caloundra Hospital Auxiliary, Nambour and Caloundra Music on Wheels, and many more.
Since 1998, Bev and Neil Booth have raised more than $90, 000 dollars through their music concerts to aid various charities/organisations. A further $60,000 alone has also been raised from the Pleasant Sunday Afternoon concerts where the money raised has gone to supporting the Caloundra Chorale.
In 2009, Bev was recognised for her hard work and dedication to charity work when she was presented with a Quiet Achiever’s Award from the Buderim War Memorial Community Association. Her reward for outstanding artistic/cultural achievement recognised her devotion to helping local communities, events and people.
Her community involvement over the past 15 years is all but astounding and so will be that of her future endeavors.