Festival

Whether one of the thousands of families with babies in strollers and toddlers on piggyback, gangs of girlfriends stretched out on the lawn or elderly couples perched in the shade listening to Corb Lund and Annie Lou, from their hearts to their souls to the bottoms of their bare feet, it's no secret that tourists and locals alike love this folk fest.

Kelly Doody - Calgary Herald

Photo by Mike Tan

39th Annual Calgary Folk Music Festival: July 26 – 29, 2018

The Calgary Folk Music Festival was founded in 1980 and is produced by the not-for-profit Folk Festival Society of Calgary. Held at Calgary's bucolic Prince’s Island Park since its inception, it’s one of Canada’s flagship, trailblazing music festivals with a national and international profile and a broad, cutting-edge programming vision.

The annual Festival is a four-day family-friendly cultural and musical extravaganza. Some 70 artists from Alberta, Canada and the world perform on six daytime and two evening stages in concerts and sessions – unpredictable mash-ups where artists collaborate in unique and unexpected ways, sharing songs and stories. It’s a genre-bending affair that cleverly unites roots, world and indie icons and upstarts from around the globe; a destination event and essential community gathering for 53,000 Calgarians and tourists.

The site boasts a family area with interactive activities and live entertainment, a Talk Tent featuring comedians and spoken word artists plus other site animations, an artisan market, global culinary delights, a record tent and tree-shaded beer garden within earshot of two stages. Our multi award-winning environment program includes recycling, composting, wind-powered energy and bicycle parking.

 

Beyond the summer festival

The Society presents music, art and cultural performances year-round at its own curated space Festival Hall and other venues around the city. It also produces Block Heater and Boot Camp.

 

Block Heater 2017 - Iskwe by Lisa Amos

Block Heater

Since 2016, the Society has hosted Block Heater in mid-February. It’s a magical weekend featuring concerts and collaborative sessions from over 25 local, Canadian and international artists in Inglewood and East Village venues.

Boot Camp @ Studio Bell

For 13 years, artists have had a unique opportunity to learn from their favourite Festival instrumental heroes, singers and song craftspeople at our mentorship and educational master classes for three consecutive days Festival week amongst the National Music Centre’s exhibits and instrument collection.

2015 Boot Camp

 

Slow Leaves performing at Festival Hall in 2016. Photo by Ron Sparrow.

Festival Hall

Since opening in September 2012 in the historic Inglewood community, Festival Hall – the Society’s office, volunteer centre and performance space  – has presented its own multi-disciplinary fall and summer concert series. It’s also hosted a variety of other events through rentals to community individuals and organizations.

 

Take a look at all the artists who have performed with us over the years.