Send For Nellie

As part of its Pride (R)evolution exhibition, the Library will be celebrating Nellie’s 33-year career in her own words, through archival recordings and newspaper interviews, as well as the words of her contemporaries, many of whom I interviewed more than 30 years ago.Nellie Small left an incredible legacy of achievement and made a dynamic and opinionated cultural contribution. On Adelaide radio in 1954 she mused, I’ve had a lot of arguments about my colour because as soon as they see me people think I must be an American. I played for the Americans during the war and many a time a chappie would come up to me and say, ‘Didn’t I see you in Detroit?’ and I’d say ‘No, you did not’. My best moments are when the audience goes Oo-ah! as soon as I appear in the spotlight.

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