News November 25, 2018

Ten fresh finalists announced for 40th Toyota Star Maker

Ten fresh finalists announced for 40th Toyota Star Maker
Image: Finalist Arna Georgia (Supplied)

The 40th has announced its 10 finalists for 2019.

Toyota Star Maker has been the launchpad for some of Australia’s biggest country music stars including Keith Urban, Lee Kernaghan, James Blundell, Travis Collins, Gina Jeffreys, Beccy Cole, Sam McClymont (The McClymonts), Darren Coggan, Lyn Bowtell, Kirsty Lee Akers, and Kaylee Bell.

In 2019, the competition will reach an extraordinary milestone – 40 years of influencing the Australian country music industry. It’s also Australia’s longest-running search for a new country music star.

The free event will be held on Sunday, January 20 at Toyota Park, in Tamworth, as traditionally the main event of the first weekend of the 47th Toyota Country Music Festival.

The ten are:

Arna Georgia, Sans Souci NSW

Blake O’Connor, Port Macquarie NSW

Chelsea Berman, Terrigal NSW

Jake Sinclair, Springhurst Vic

Juliet Oliver, McLaren Vale SA

Leigha Moore, Sippy Downs Qld

Linc Phelps, Gympie Qld

Lizzie Steadman, Kootingal NSW

Matt James, Mt Gambier SA

Stephanie Penrose, Moore Creek NSW

Event producer Barry Harley said: “Many of the benefits of being part of the Star Maker family are intangible – but absolutely priceless.

“The networking among the past alumni and the current crop of Toyota Star Makers is extraordinary. You can’t put a price on that.”

The winner’s prize package includes the use of a new Toyota vehicle and a fuel card for 12 months, plus guaranteed performances at major festivals and events throughout Australia.

A full prize list can be found at

Toyota Australia chief marketing officer Wayne Gabriel is delighted to continue Toyota’s support of the event.

“We want to inspire people to start their impossible, and Toyota Star Maker is the perfect platform for young artists to launch their career,” he said.

“Last year’s winner Brad Cox, as well as previous winners such as Lee Kernaghan and Sam McClymont are perfect examples of that.

On Wednesday, January 23, Toyota Star Maker will present its 40 years with a concert featuring 28 past winners, and hosted by Nick Erby.

Tickets are on sale now through Entertainment Venues.

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