The Festival of Small Halls is seeking community-based rural halls to host world-class folk, Celtic, and traditional concerts this September.

The “Team behind Bluesfest” has started a new festival, smaller in scale, but just as impressive in quality. Inspired by festivals of the same spirit in Cape Breton, PEI and Australia, The Festival of Small Halls is about sharing exceptional music in small, beloved places. Festival organizers choose performers based on their talent, their ability to connect with audiences, and their enthusiasm about stepping off the beaten track to perform in intimate venues. The festival is looking forward to bringing these top-notch musicians to some of Eastern Ontario’s most unique, culturally-rich rural buildings. The inaugural event was successfully launched in Perth, Gananoque, and Bloomfield, Ontario in 2014.

Festival organizers will deliver programming, marketing, artist transportation, stage management, and the best in sound equipment and technical expertise. Communities are asked to provide a unique local building and their most enthusiastic team of volunteers to help with set up, light refreshments, and ticket sales. This union of big names, professional sound quality, cherished buildings, and community engagement can only lead to an unforgettable weekend of music.

In addition to the musical event, some communities have also used this opportunity to showcase other experiences: they have organized farmer’s markets, craft fairs, community suppers or auctions to complement the main musical event. Concert-goers can easily be enticed to stroll down main streets and pop into local businesses to enjoy the distinctive flavour of the town. There are countless opportunities to make the weekend a wonderful experience for locals and visitors alike.

Communities interested in opening their doors to first-rate music are asked to send a letter as a formal expression of interest before April 1st, 2015. Letters can be emailed to or sent by mail to:

The Festival of Small Halls
c/o Kelly Symes
450 Churchill Ave
Ottawa, Ontario
K1Z 5E2

For any additional information, please visit, or contact Kelly Symes, Festival Coordinator, at (613) 247-1188 ext.258