GRAB YOUR UKE: Gladstone ukulele club meet twice each week for musical fun.
GRAB YOUR UKE: Gladstone ukulele club meet twice each week for musical fun. Greg Bray

Gladstone Ukulele Club learning how to play along the way

What started out as a hobby in retirement has turned into something of an obsession for Cheryl Hopkins.

"I've never played an instrument in my life," she said,

"But I one day I picked up a banjolele and gave it a strum and was immediately hooked."

Cheryl found a tutor at the Academy of Music in Gympie.

"They said the best way to keep learning is to teach someone else to play," she said.

That was the moment the Gladstone Ukulele Club, GUKES, was formed

"We've got about 35 regular players now with new ones coming in all the time," Cheryl said.

"98 per cent of them haven't played an instrument before.

"But the ukulele is one of the simplest instruments to learn and it's so much fun."

The GUKES meet twice a week at the QRI Hall in Off St., Monday evenings from 6.30pm until 9pm and Wednesday morning from 10am to midday.

"It doesn't matter if you can't play, come down and have a go," Cheryl said.

"If you don't have an instrument we have some spares."

 

Cheryl says the group also do public performances.

"We perform at the retirement village and the respite centre," she said.

"We did the Gladstone and Calliope Christmas Carols and last weekend we played at the Benaraby State School fair.

"For a lot of our musicians it's their first time on stage and they are really keen to do more shows.

"I think we've created a musical monster!"