What a fantastic response there was to our recent exclusive competition with a double pass to a Brisbane performance of the spectacular stage show Cloudland The Musical on offer. So many wonderful and varied memories were received that the show’s producer, writer and director Paul Hayman had a tough time picking a winner. So he picked two!
“In all honesty,” he told us, “I wish I had more tickets to give away; I would have given a double pass to everyone who shared their story. I am continually amazed how Cloudland impacted on people’s lives.
The vivid memories people share about this venue just reiterate its significance. Thank you everyone for your wonderful stories.”
And thank you, Paul, for your generosity. We’re delighted to hear that the season at the QUT Theatre was another sell-out success and that the show will be touring again in 2022.
The winning Memories, reproduced here, came from Bribie locals Val Christopher and Veronica O’Brien, with each receiving a Double Pass valued at $180 to attend one of the final Brisbane season performances for 2021.
Congratulations to Val and Veronica, and thanks to all those readers who shared their personal, and often romantic, reminiscences of the iconic venue which was so much more than a ballroom.
The show will be returning in 2022 and details will be announced online as soon as available. Go to www.cloudlandthemusical.com or scan the code for access.
MY CLOUDLAND MEMORIES – VERONICA O'BRIEN
“When the moment has passed, life is just a memory.”
The excitement of re-living those memories of my first and only visit to Cloudland consume me, just thinking about it some 55 years later.
Living in Beenleigh (then classed as ‘country’ in the mid sixties) our social life was going to local dances. I made my Debut at 16 and to this day still have the tiara in my box of treasures.
Imagine a country kid receiving an invitation to go to Cloudland..... The trip up to Cloudland, seeing the twinkling lights of Brisbane set the scene for what was to come.
We were a little late, but arrived to the sound of music, and as the door opened, it revealed the twirling of skirts, net petticoats peeping from beneath the fashionable best dresses.
Men’s patent shoes did not reveal a speck of dust, some men wearing gloves that embraced the back of their lady's bodice. Ladies’ gloves exaggerated the arm extension to dances like Pride of Erin, Jazz Waltz, Fox Trot and many more. Jewellery sparkled around slender necks, with matching clip-on earrings.
It was magic.
MY MEMORIES OF CLOUDLAND – VAL CHRISTOPHER
I was born in 1936 and grew up in the New Farm and Fortitude Valley area. I played tennis in the Valley and one of the players worked in the Taxation Department. They held a BaII every year at Cloudland and she suggested we go. Most of us agreed and we formed a party. We met at the Carlton Hotel, which was in Queen Steet, for a drink. I naturally had orange juice, being a teenager.
Gordon, who was a close member of our family, brought his girl friend and also his mate, Mervyn, with his girl friend. I thought to myself what a good looking chap he was. We all had a good night, but at our next tennis night Gordon said he and his girl friend had split up, and the same thing happened to Mervyn. I asked my girl friend at work, Sheila, to come and play tennis, which she did. Gordon and Sheila became good friends and started going out together. Gordon suggested he bring Merv along and asked me to go out with them. We had some good times together. Merv was a good dancer but me, I had two left feet. He kept telling me to listen to the beat of the drums. To cut a long story short, Gordon married Sheila and I married Merv.
Merv got very sick and ended up being in a wheelchair. He spent a lot of time in the then Brisbane General Hospital. Cloudland could be seen from his bed.
I think Cloudland was demolished on the 6th November, 1982 and Merv died on the 11th November, 1982.