Canada Far & Wide: Grands Esprits

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

5 pm to 9 pm Victoria Park, FREE admission

For one year only, we're adding a Thursday night to the Regina Folk Festival!

We have partnered with Vancouver, Calgary, Canmore and Winnipeg Folk Festivals for a special Canada 150+ project: Canada Far & Wide: Grand Esprits. This collaboratively curated project celebrates key songs from Canada’s history, performed by seasoned and emerging artists through a quintessential Canadian Songbook selected by the five artistic directors of the participating prairie folk festivals. 

Through the power of song and the magic of music festivals, this project invites us all to come together in an enriching way to create a better, more inclusive, Canada.


Thursday Schedule

5:00 pm - DJ remix of the complete Canadian Songbook by Saskatchewan’s own Charly Hustle

6:00 pm - Canada Far & Wide: Grands Esprits “Supergroup” Concert
Far & Wide “Supergroup” Cris Derksen, DJ Shub and Mélisande (électrotrad) will perform 10 remixed songs from the Canadian Songbook that they have prepped and will perform at each of the participant festivals. They will be joined by RFF performers Kiera Dall’Osto and Blake Berglund.

6:55 pm - Canadian Songbook Singalong with Toronto’s Choir!Choir!Choir! and 2 local choirs featuring 3 quintessential Canadian songs.

7:55 pm - Workshop with Vox Sambou, Kacy & Clayton and Eekwol with their own unique interpretations of their selections from the Songbook.

Eekwol will MC the evening.
Teasers by FadaDance and Dirty Catfish Brass Band (using Canadian Songbook selections)

Rounding out this extra special night, we have:
Five food trucks!
Our awesome beer garden (adjacent to the stage)!
The City of Regina Indigenous Pavillion**
The Mackenzie Art Gallery tent**
Together Exhibit**

(**more on these to come)

Canada Far & Wide: Grands Esprits

A Summer of Celebrating Canadian Music


The Winnipeg, Vancouver, Calgary, Canmore, and Regina Folk Festivals have teamed up this summer to curate an inspiring live touring collaborative project called Canada Far & Wide; Grands Esprits, celebrating the Canadian songbook.

"The songs chosen celebrate diverse genres, cultures, regions, traditions, and generations. Plus, we included key compositions by Canadian trailblazers like Joni Mitchell, Hank Snow, Buffy Sainte-Marie and Leonard Cohen. But, we really wanted to mess with genres and perspectives with these songs, and bring them into new forms while celebrating their narratives and history" explains Artistic Director Kerry Clarke from the Calgary Folk Music Festival on behalf of the festivals involved.

Anchored by Cree cellist Cris Derksen, former A Tribe Called Red member and electric pow-wow artist DJ Shub and Quebec's Mélisande (électrotrad), most of this main touring group will be performing along with guest artists each weekend from July 5 - August 13, 2017.

The shows at each festival will be rounded off with additional interpretations of the Canadian songbook by the following Canadian artists: Choir! Choir! Choir!, Old Man LuedeckeDiyetCécile Doo-KinguéBirds of ChicagoBarney BentallBasia BulatJason CollettTurkwazVox Sambou, Kacy and ClaytonCold SpecksCR AveryQuantam TangleDirty Catfish Brass BandWhitehorseEekwolKiera Dall'OstoBlake BerglundFadaDance, Coco Love-Alcorn and William Prince.

"We're going to present some of these new curations using the traditional Canadian Folk Festival workshop format - something that our festival-goers love as it often creates vibrant and unforgettable musical moments for the crowd to enjoy" explains Artistic Director Chris Frayer from Winnipeg Folk Festival.

Canada Far & Wide: Grands Esprits is curated with a focus on a diversity of voices and artistry while putting the focus on all of Canada's history, both positive and challenging. Indigenous songwriters have contributed key songs to the songbook and First Nations artists are integral to the live performance of the project. Through the power of the songs and the magic of music festivals, this project invites us all to come together in a more positive way to create a better, more inclusive, Canada.

The five western festivals behind this project are part of a unique Canadian festival model that has been celebrated since 1961. These outdoor, not-for-profit, community-based events with great artist hospitality and a unique programming format have earned a glowing reputation for programming that supports diverse music. They form an integral part of the Canadian summer music tradition in Canada's western provinces. 

This project has been funded in part by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage and is one of the 200 exceptional projects funded through the Canada Council for the Arts' New Chapter initiative. With this $35M initiative, the Council supports the creation and sharing of the arts in communities across Canada.

Regina Folk Festival 2017. Be there.