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Local family to perform at Fort Macleod Arts Building

Jillian Moranz, Alex Westwood, Maureen Chambers and Ryland Moranz (front) perform Thursday, Oct. 8 at the Fort Macleod Arts Building.

Jillian Moranz, Alex Westwood, Maureen Chambers and Ryland Moranz (front) perform Thursday, Oct. 8 at the Fort Macleod Arts Building.

A Fort Macleod family will perform a house concert Thursday, Oct. 8 on Main Street.
Maureen Chambers and her children Ryland and Jillian will perform at 7 p.m. at the Fort Macleod Arts Building.
The talented family, who performed in concert at the same venue earlier this year, wanted to get together one more time before Jillian moves to Vancouver.
“We just thought that we would do a show before she leaves,” Chambers said. “The last one was so much fun for us that we thought we would do it again.”
Music runs in the family.
Chambers has recorded an album and for years was artistic director of South Country Fair, in which she and husband Trent Moranz helped pioneer and continue to support.
Ryland Moranz for years played with the Fort Macleod band Sophmore Jakes before going out on his own.
In addition to recently opening for Junior Gone Wild, Ryland Moranz is enrolled in the music department at the University of Lethbridge where he is majoring in audio and digital recording.
Jillian Moranz, like her brother is a singer-songwriter and who performs as Lil’ Jill, has a degree in anthropology and wrote an undergraduate thesis on music festivals.
Chambers will open the concert with a selection of songs before giving way to her daughter. When Jillian is finished Ryland will take the stage, with his fiance Alex Westwood also singing.
The audience will hear some of the songs from Another One About Flowers, which Chambers and her children recorded in 2014.
The concert will end with the family joining together for a song.
“We’ll play something at the end that we’re all practicing on our own and we’ll put together,” Chambers said. “Last time we played something that we hadn’t even planned to do and it worked. The audience is so kind to us.”
Jillian Moranz is moving to Vancouver to run a restaurant and music venue called Skinny Fat Jack’s, and wanted the family to perform together before she left.
Playing such an intimate venue, at which there is little separation between performer and audience, can be both challenging and rewarding.
“It’s very intimate, and that can be a little bit tough,” Chambers said. “I always find the audiences that are closest to you in real life are the hardest.”
“But they’re just so kind to us that it all works,” Chambers said. “You just feel the love.”
Chambers said having a smaller venue such as the Fort Macleod Arts Building provides new opportunities for musicians.
“It’s fantastic,” Chambers said. “We have been missing that for some time.”
The Empress Theatre, community hall and Holy Cross Hall are all good venues, but the Arts Building is just right for a “house party” setting.
Chambers said the idea of combining a venue where art is made and displayed with music also makes sense.
“I am over the moon with it,” Chambers said. “You need the smaller venue. Quite often the theatre isn’t an appropriate venue for what you need.”
Chambers is delighted with the chance to perform with her children.
“When we’re playing together I have to rein so hard because I feel like I want to bust out of my body,” Chambers said with a laugh. “It”s magical.”
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the music starts at 7 p.m. Admission is by donation.

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