600 Shows For Musica Viva

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Like most community ventures, Harvey Community Radio 96.5fm began life as an idea, an inconceivable notion and a futile gamble according to many. The idea became a reality when, in 1999, discussions and planning began with the Australian Broadcasting Authority (later to become ACMA) for a proposed community radio station based in Harvey. Not just any community radio station, because Harvey Community Radio 96.5fm (HCR 96.5fm) would become the first of its kind in an regional area fronting the Indian and Southern Oceans, covering 24,000km2 and including 12 local government areas. This is the South West region of WA and the most populous and economically diverse of WA’s regions.

A former Catholic Priest’s house and later community op-shop building became home to HCR 96.5fm and renovations from dilapidated house to radio station began in August 2003. All this was possible with the assistance of the Shire of Harvey, initial grant funding of $24,000.00 from the South West Development Commission, foundation membership funding from local businesses, authorities and private individuals. A long-term lease was secured from the Shire of Harvey and after almost twelve months of dedicated effort, Harvey Community Radio 96.5fm was officially opened on Saturday June 12th 2004.


Volunteers produced and presented programs and outside broadcasts for a brand-new audience, trail blazing for other community stations, but one program has survived the full journey and continues to support our Italian community with one hour per week of Italian language, music and community news. Angela Vitalone and Mimma Morabito recently celebrated their 600th Musica Viva Program with an outside broadcast and cake to thank listeners for their support over the years. In November of 2018, the community were able to personally thank Angela and Mimma for many devoted volunteer hours that ensures a little bit of Itlay comes to Harvey once a week. The celebration was broadcast live in the main street from the Harvey Community Radio outside broadcast van. 

The South West of WA experienced an influx of post war Italian migration and many settled in the South West region while small communities, building infrastructure and economic stability, were in need of labour. Italian migration has been important to the progress of the region and has resulted in a high proportion of residents for whom English is still a second language. Angela and Mimma are dedicated to making sure those community members are up to date with information and news while at the same time keeping Italian language alive for everyone, including school programs. Harvey Community Radio is sure the next celebration will be for the Musica Viva 1000th show.


Published 26th March, 2019