World-famous folk singers will bring this tiny hall to life
A WOMAN who was raised around music is ready to see life come full circle this Friday, when two world-renowned folk musicians bring the dance hall of her childhood to life.
Ann-Maree Willett remembers Maryvale Hall as the place where her mother, a prolific old time dance musician, performed her very first concert.
"She played for all the dances around Warwick as I was growing up, in a band called the Goldtones,” she said.
Right up to the age of 91, Ms Willett's mother continued to play piano.
She instilled a passion for music in Maryvale's Ms Willett, who went on to become a board member for Woodford Folk Festival and one of the drivers behind a growing movement to bring the world-class music to regional and remote communities.
Producer Eleanor Rigden said the Festival of Small Halls was an imitative the began in Canada and was now taking off in Australia.
Over the past few weeks Canadian folk singer Old Man Luedecke and Australian musician Lucy Wise have captivated audiences in the halls of Coramba, Valla, Texas, Westbrook and more.
But when the tour finally reaches Maryvale on Friday, Mrs Willett will see her two worlds collide.
"I just can't wait, it's going to be a special night,” she said.
She recalled memories of her childhood community gathering in the hall.
"I mostly remember dancing together as a social way of being, enjoying the beautiful suppers that the local ladies would provide,” she said.
"They would spread across hops, saw dust, across the floor to make it easier to slide your feet across the hall.
"It was really the coming together for community and having that opportunity to socialise.”
Ms Rigden said two local artists from the Southern Downs area would also play on the night.
"Most of the halls have been absolutely packed so far, and I am picking Maryvale as a sell-out,” she said.
There will also be food and drinks provided on the night, with everything kicking off at 6pm.
To purchase tickets contact Shane on 0438 609 5657 or visit https://festivalofsmallhalls.com/tours/summer- 2018/\