Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Happy Australia Day

In 2009 the Hong Kong Australian Chamber of Commerce hired former Noiseworks and INXS rocker Jon Stevens to perform the Australian Anthem at their Australia Day luncheon.

Why am I telling you this, you ask. Well, this year the singer for the Australian Anthem at the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong was...

are you ready for it?

Jemilla Harvey!

It's true! Craig's boss, Gail Maidment is very well-known in Hong Kong and she recommended that Jemilla perform the anthem after her fantastic rendition of Aussie Jingle Bells at the Australian Consulate Christmas party. Now, as Jemilla's parents we naturally think that she's absolutely wonderful in every way. However, just between you and me, sometimes she does sing a bit off-key. (Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh....don't tell her!) Despite that, she has been given opportunities to perform publicly that she would likely never have experienced in Australia. As a result, she is overcoming stage nerves and shouldering new responsibilities. And today those responsibilities included singing for none other than Peter Costello.

This was the event:


Tuesday 26 January 2010
Proudly sponsored by:

AustCham and National Australia Bank Hong Kong are proud to announce former Treasurer, The Hon. Peter Costello, will be joining us at the 2010 AustCham NAB Australia Day Lunch.
As the longest serving Treasurer in Australia’s history, Mr Costello brought down twelve consecutive Federal Budgets, including ten surpluses, before leaving politics in 2009 – with his sense of humour intact.
In one of his first major speeches since departing politics, Mr Costello will lift the lid on aspects of his public career, including that Macarena dance. All delivered in the style which made him widely regarded as one of Question Time’s most witty speakers.
On a day to celebrate all things Australian, Peter Costello reveals his recent preference for a VB and sing-a-long to Meatloaf, over media scrums and political leadership battles.

The Hon. Peter Costello was first elected a Member of the House of Representatives for the seat of Higgins in 1990 and has been a Member of seven Australian Parliaments. He was elected Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia in May 1994 and served in that post to November 2007. Peter resigned from the Parliament on 19 October 2009.
Peter was one of the 24-member committee of the International Monetary Fund, a Governor of the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank for approximately 10 years. Peter is currently on an Independent Advisory Board to the World Bank and he is a Partner and Managing Director at BKK Partners.
He has written a best selling memoir published in 2008 by Melbourne University Press.
Tuesday 26 January 2010
Cocktails 12.00pm, Lunch 12.30pm, Close 2.30pm
Ballroom, 5/F, Island Shangri-La Hong Kong
Pacific Place, Supreme Court Road, Central

So January 26, 2010, has been very different to previous Australia Days we've experienced. This Australia Day we're not wearing our singlets, shorts and thongs.  (The weather in Hong Kong is still a tad chilly.) Nor is there a huge fireworks display to enjoy while we munch on lamingtons and Tim Tams with the smell of chops and sausages sizzling on the barbecue wafting through the air.

But watching our daughter demonstrate her God-given ability to sing in front of a room full of 300 international big-wigs...well, that's pretty cool too.

We've had a great Australia Day.

Hope you have too.


  1. What's the big green creature lurking behind the koala? A bunyip?

  2. I think it's a frill-neck lizard, minus the frill.

    Of all the comments you could have made about this post you're picking on a picture??? Do you want me to remove it?

  3. Way to go, Jemilla! Next you'll be singing at the cricket!

    Oh, I think the green creature is the friendly green tree frog. The bunyip is not such a cheery chap.

  4. Well done Jemilla - I'm so impressed that you were able to sing the national anthem in front of so many people!
    What a wonderful Australia Day (much more exciting than ours I think!)

    BTW, did Craig chat to Peter Costello? I'm sure Geoff would have, given half a chance.

  5. Yes, Amanda, Craig asked Pete why he wasn't more supportive of the CDP.

    No, actually Craig was sitting with the peons at a back table a LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG way from the Head Table.

  6. WOW! That is so amazing! Congratulations!

  7. Wow Renee - that is so awesome!! Well done Jemilla!!!! That has made our Australia Day!! Craig & Leonie.

  8. Oh Jemilla I am so proud of you!Did everyone else sing as well?I love you!

  9. BTW was there any hint of Peter Costello's beliefs re Christianity? I shall have to scurry over and find his biography.

  10. WOW!!!!! Hi Jemilla it looks like you had a great time. Well done. I know that it can be scary signing in front of people, but it is also great fun. We wanted to give you a BIG high 5 from all of us! The Matchett's