The 30th annual Mission Folk Music Festival is fast approaching. The family friendly festival is renowned for its mix of accessibility, affordability and small-town friendliness, and of course the lovely shaded stages.
This anniversary year, also Mission’s 125 and Canada 150, features BC icons Jim Byrnes, Valdy and the Marcus Mosely Chorale. And as usual there’s no shortage of cultural traditions to explore.
The Italian connection is made from the collaboration of master accordionist and composer Filippo Gambetta and Emilyn Stam (Lemon Bucket Orkestra, Shoeless), a Toronto-based fiddler, pianist and accordionist. Hailing from Genoa, Gambetta’s music is steeped in northern Italian folk idioms, but also taps Nordic, Celtic, Balkan and other global inspirations which the duo perform from Gambetta’s latest CD Otto Baffi.
La Famille Léger play the dancing music of French Canada – the music handed down through generations, the music of back porches and kitchen parties. Louis Léger leads the band on the one-row melodeon (a type of button accordion), son Devon plays fiddle, Devon’s mom Barbara plays guitar and his wife, Dejah, is on piano. This proudly “old school” family band will have the family dancing and joining in on the fun. Dance Caller extraordinaire Ghislain Jutras brings his energetic, authentic, and unifying style to the mix.
Members of 3TíR, TíR” meaning “land or country” in Irish Gaelic, proudly represent their individual land and heritage. This multi-awarding winning trio, featuring Franco Ontarian fiddler Pierre Schryer, Irish button accordionist Dermot Byrne, and European influenced guitarist Adam Dobres from British Columbia, are a tour de force of versatility, fine musicianship and technical dexterity.
All these buttons and bows will be at play among the many other musical styles from Ruby & Smith’s jazz infused ukulele, to the roadhouse honkytonk of The Neon Stars to the African dance and drum of Kokoma.
The full line-up can be found at missionfolkmusicfestival.ca.
Weekend passes are $60 for adults, $55 for seniors and students, $35 for youth $35 and free for children 12 and under.
Friday (July 21) is a special pay-what-you-can admission.