A new event on the 2018 Apple and Grape Harvest Festival program will celebrate Italian food, music and culture. “Banchetto Italiano: Celebrating Italian Culture on the Granite Belt” will be an afternoon filled with food, wine, fun and entertainment. 

“Banchetto Italiano” will feature a four-course banquet lunch presented by chef Jason Costanzo and Glen Nocente, with Italian entertainment by accordionist Robert Grant and local performers. 

The event will begin with an opening ceremony including both Italian and Australian cultures, followed by a presentation on Italian settlement in the Granite Belt. 

Guests will be entertained by accordionist Robert Grant, who is well known to Apple and Grape Harvest Festival audiences through his previous appearances with the Carnival Roving Gypsy Band.

At “Banchetto Italiano”, the Robert Grant Trio will be performing traditional Italian music that is sure to have the audience singing and dancing along. 

Performing as the Continental Party Band – with  Maggie Adeney West on mandolin, guitar and vocals and Tim West on bass, acoustic and electric guitars and vocals –  the trio are favourites at the Brisbane Multicultural Festival, Gold Coast Italian Festival, Inghams Australian Italian Festival and Brisbane City Hall concerts. 

Local singing artists and Stanthorpe State High School’s Italian Immersion Students will also be entertaining at “Banchetto Italiano”. 

A special treat will be a performance of the Italian folk dance, the Tarantella, by a local dance class. 

“We’ve planned this event as a celebration of Italian culture which we hope will appeal to people of non-Italian as well as Italian heritage,” organising committee member Shane Dullahide said. 

“As part of the first weekend of the festival, it will be a great way to bring the community together and set the mood for the festival.” 

“’Banchetto Italiano’ will be held at the International Club on Sunday, February 25, 2018, from 12pm to 4.30pm. 

The cost of the afternoon is $65 per head. 

Tickets are expected to be available at Maddie’s Gift Gallery in Maryland Street, Stanthorpe, and online from November 20. 

“Banchetto Italiano” is sponsored by Golden Grove Estate, chef Jason Costanzo, Ballandean Estate Wines, I & L Rizzato & Sons and Nicoletti Orchards. 

Photo: Accordionist Robert Grant (pictured with Maggie Adeney West  and Tim West of the Continental Party Band) will entertain with the Robert Grant Trio at the Italian music at “Banchetto Italiano: Celebrating Italian Culture on the Granite Belt” as part of the 2018 Apple and Grape Harvest Festival.