Powerhouse blues vocalist a Harrison Festival highlight

Lineup announced for 34th annual arts and culture event

The lineup has been announced for the 34th Harrison Festival of the Arts; July 7 to 15 with an opening night concert Friday, July 6.

From lively Cajun/Zydeco music to the past and future of Celtic music to a number of the World’s best blues artists and African performers, the Harrison Festival truly covers the globe.

For 34 years, the Harrison Festival of the Arts has presented the best in performing and visual art from around the world in a setting free of large crowds, line-ups and high ticket prices. The Festival is an event the whole family can enjoy featuring music, a large outdoor art and craft market, workshops, a special day for children (of all ages) and much more.

Live performances in the venerable Harrison Memorial Hall include eight full-length concerts, one evening of theatre and one evening of literary readings. Audiences can look forward to powerhouse blues vocalist Shakura S’aida, blues/gospel group Mike Farris & the Cumberland Saints and Louisiana Cajun/Zydeco crew Cedric Watson & Bijou Creole.

Other standouts include some Mississippi blues joined with West African music from Markus James & the Wassonrai, Mali’s Sidi Touré and the ‘golden voice’ of Mozambique Wazimbo. Champion fiddler Niamh Ni Charra brings Irish traditional music and dance while Sketch combines Scottish trad with modern dance rhythms. The always popular Literary Café and plays from the University of the Fraser Valley Directors’ Festival round out the program.

Those evening concerts are the only ticketed events at the Festival and seating in the Memorial Hall is limited. Tickets for these performances are now on sale and a Festival Pass is available for all evening concerts. Early bird discounts are available until June 22.

During the Festival, enjoy musical from around the world at the Music on the Beach Stage. For the price of a daily $2 Festival button, sample a smorgasbord of global music and dance. The Vancouver International Bhangra Celebration will present some amazing dance, while roots and blues music will be well represented by Ken Whiteley, Harrison Kennedy, Pura Fe, the 24th Street Wailers, and Rick Fines & Suzie Vinnick.  A wide range of styles will be featured by many other Beach Stage performers.

Visit the Festival’s visual art exhibit in the picturesque Ranger Station Art Gallery featuring the work of Leo Labelle.

The juried Art Market returns, under the tents on the lake front. This market features some of B.C.’s finest artists and artisans displaying a dazzling array of hand crafted items. Open July 7 & 8 and July 13, 14 & 15, select from pottery, jewelry, glass, metal, sculpture, musical instruments, paintings, leather and wood work and much more.

Calling the young and young at heart is Children’s Day, a special day of fun and activity including crafts, the climbing wall, street performers, music and featuring The Kerplunks in the Memorial Hall.  The fun happens from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, July 11.

For more information visit www.harrisonfestival.com. Tickets are available online through the website, by phone at 604 796-3664 and in person at the Ranger Station Art Gallery.