Richmond Folk Festival Celebrates 10 Years,
Invites Favorites Back to the Stage
Aug. 13, 2014
RICHMOND, Va. – The Richmond Folk Festival turns 10 this year. To celebrate the occasion, the festival is bringing back a number of its most popular performers from years past.
“We’ve seen some amazing artists over the last nine years,” Festival Director Lisa Sims said. “It seemed fitting to work with our local Programming Committee to invite back some of the best-loved performers.”
The 10th Richmond Folk Festival, October 10-12, 2014, will feature thirty-five performing groups, including such past crowd favorites as:
- Debashish Bhattacharya
- Ensemble Shandehzadeh
- Jesse McReynolds
- Le Vent Du Nord
- Maggie Ingram & the Ingramettes
- Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano
- Tezcatlipoca Voladores
- The Bailey Hummingbirds
- The Holmes Brothers
- Trouble Funk
The three-day festival is a multi-sensory experience of music, dance, crafts and food. There are six stages of music and dance performances, a bustling crafts marketplace and food vendors representing an array of cultural cuisines, as well as the ever-popular Genworth Financial Family Area, programmed by the Children’s Museum of Richmond.
First introduced as the National Folk Festival presented in partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA) in 2005, and continuing independently since 2008, the Richmond Folk Festival remains the largest free event of its kind in the country. Hundreds of thousands descend on downtown Richmond’s historic riverfront to enjoy the event every year.
Virginia Folklife: 25 Years of Sharing Living Traditions
The Virginia Folklife Program (VFP) at the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities is also commemorating a major milestone. For 25 years, the organization has documented the Commonwealth's music and material traditions and shared those histories through hands-on workshops, performances, exhibitions, audio and video recordings and apprenticeships across Virginia.
“We capture the stories of everyday people living extraordinary lives,” State Folklorist Jon Lohman, curator for the Virginia Folklife Area, said. “From fiddle-making to gospel singing, our focus is to keep these traditions vibrant from generation to generation.”
Virginia Folklife is also pleased to invite favorite performers and artisans back to the festival, including, but not limited to:
- Frank Newsome
- Church Crowns Fashion Show
- Linda Lay and Sammy Shelor
- Cheick Hamala Diabate
- Deborah Pratt and Clementine Macon Boyd (oyster shuckers)
- Gerald Anderson (instrument maker)
- Spencer Strickland (instrument maker)
- Don Leister (violin maker)
- Walter Messick (dulcimer maker)
- Grayson Chesser (decoy carver)
- Clyde Jenkins (baskets)
- Mama Girl (paper Mache sculptures)
- Dudley Biddlecomb (oyster aquaculture)
- George Butler (boat builder)
See the full listing of Virginia Folklife performers and craft makers.
Looking Ahead: The Next 10 Years
While it requires more than $1 million to put on the Richmond Folk Festival each year, the event remains free and open to the public.
“Richmond embraced the festival from the very beginning,” Sims said. “It has been such a joy to see it continue to thrive, thanks to the generous support of our volunteers, corporate sponsors and individual donors. We are looking forward to many more years to come.”
Learn more about the Richmond Folk Festival and how to support the festival.
About The Richmond Folk Festival
The Richmond Folk Festival is one of Virginia's largest events, drawing visitors from all over the country to downtown Richmond's historic riverfront. The Festival is a FREE three-day event that got its start as the National Folk Festival, held in Richmond from 2005-2007. In the tradition of the "National," the Richmond Folk Festival features excellent performing groups representing a diverse array of cultural traditions on seven stages. The festival includes continuous music and dance performances, a Virginia Folklife Area featuring ongoing demonstrations, an interactive Family Area produced by the Children's Museum of Richmond, a folk art marketplace, regional and ethnic foods, festival merchandise and more. More information is available at www.richmondfolkfestival.org.
About Venture Richmond
The Festival is produced by Venture Richmond, in a continuing partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA), the City of Richmond, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, the National Park Service and the Children’s Museum of Richmond. Venture Richmond is a non-profit organization formed to engage business and community leaders in partnering with the City to enhance the vitality of the community, particularly Downtown, through economic development, marketing, promotion, advocacy and events. Venture Richmond also produces such long-standing and signature community events as Easter on Parade, Friday Cheers, RVA Fireworks on the James, and the 2nd Street Festival, and partners with the Richmond Sportsbackers to co-produce Dominion Riverrock. For more information visit www.venturerichmond.com.
About the National Council for the Traditional Arts
The National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the presentation and documentation of folk and traditional arts in the United States. Founded in 1933, it is the nation's oldest folk arts organization. The NCTA presents the nation's very finest traditional artists in festivals, tours, international cultural exchanges, workshops, demonstrations and exhibitions, media productions, school programs, and other activities. It works in partnership with communities across America to establish new, sustainable traditional arts events that deliver lasting social, cultural and economic benefits. For more about the NCTA, visit www.ncta.net.