We’ve been talking up the Festival of Small Halls in recent editions of Blank GC, but the next instalment coming to the Gold Coast promises to be something special.
18 December sees the Mudgeeraba Memorial Hall come to life with the ukulele wielding magic of the Mae Trio as well as the incredibly talented Del Barber, all the way from Canada.
There’s a vast difference between the prairies of Manitoba, Canada and Mudgeeraba, Gold Coast and the highly regarded young folk-Americana, alt-country singer-songwriter is keenly anticipating his visit.
“Australia really does seem like a world away from mine. It has always been mythical and other to me; a place I have been dreaming of seeing with my own eyes”, Del said.
“It is after all a vast country not unlike Canada. What I truly cherish about home exists far from the skyscrapers and traffic of the cities, where I find peace is in small communities, usually around farmers and ranchers. I can’t wait for an Australian taste of that more than anything else.”
Del’s likely to feel somewhat at home at Mudgeeraba with the Wallaby Hotel originally built in 1884 and many crediting the opening of this watering hole, both for horses and passengers, for the impetus around which the village was built.
Modelled on a traditional Australian hall experience, the Festival of Small Halls visits towns where communities are strong, but may not have access to high quality musical acts due to their location or lack of suitable venue. Artists are chosen not only for the high calibre of their music, but for their enthusiasm and willingness to become part of the community for the brief time that they pass through.
The Festival of Small Halls Summer Tour is bookended by Mullum Music Festival, where Del Barber performed last weekend, and Woodford Folk Festival which rounds out the tour on 27 December.
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Festival of Small Halls
Thursday 18 December, Mudgeeraba Memorial Hall