The Richmond Folk Festival returns October 13-15, 2023, and celebrates its 19th anniversary, having become one of Virginia’s largest events. The beloved festival draws fans each year to downtown Richmond’s riverfront to celebrate the roots, richness and variety of American culture through music, dance, traditional crafts, storytelling and food.
The free, three-day event hosts 200,000 people over the weekend and is presented by Venture Richmond Events in partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA), Virginia Humanities, the Center for Cultural Vibrancy, the Children’s Museum and the City of Richmond.
Featuring six stages and showcasing music and dance from more than 30 performing groups from around the nation and the world, the Richmond Folk Festival today announces 10 artists of what will once again be a culturally diverse and dynamic, inspiring program. Of the artists announced for the festival to date, seven cultural traditions have never before been presented at the festival.
“Once again, the Richmond Folk Festival offers something for everyone, from acclaimed and groundbreaking bluegrass, New Orleans funk, and classical Indian artists to downhome gospel and blues performers deserving of wider acclaim,” said Blaine Waide, associate director of the National Council for the Traditional Arts. “Artists featured in this year’s program hail from Richmond and across the country, and as far away as Burkina Faso and isolated Indigenous communities in the Philippines. It’s free, and it’s all excellent.”
Additional artists to be featured at the 2023 Richmond Folk Festival include:
Annie & the Caldwell Singers (gospel)
West Point, Mississippi
New York, New York
Chris Thomas & His Smoke Dancers (Haudenosaunee social dance)
Onondaga Nation, New York
Cyril Neville with Omari Neville & the Fuel (New Orleans funk and R&B)
New Orleans, Louisiana
Grupo Mono Blanco (son jarocho)
Helobung (traditional Tboli music and dance)
Lake Sebu, Philippines
Lutchinha (Cabo Verdean)
Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Chas (zydeco)
Stanley & the Ten Sleepless Knights (quelbe music)
St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands
State of the Ozarks String Band (Ozark old-time)
The Richmond Folk Festival Needs YOU!
The Richmond Folk Festival offers a variety of exciting volunteer opportunities. With over 800 volunteers each year, we can’t do it without you! The festival is a wonderful place for civic, school, church and office organizations to volunteer, or simply sign up with your best friend to spend a day together at the festival! In 2022, Style Weekly recognized the Richmond Folk Festival’s volunteers as “Richmonders of the Year!”
Benefits of being a festival volunteer include a free t-shirt, free parking and discounts on festival merchandise.
Encore Performances on VPM
Every Saturday at 5:00pm, catch Virginia Public Media (VPM) broadcasts of favorite performances from the 2022 Richmond Folk Festival. Tune in to Richmond public radio VPM stations 107.3 FM & 93.1 FM for great musical memories. Add these shows to your calendar today:
- 8/19 – Jesse Daniel – honky-tonk country
- 8/26 – 79rs Gang – Black Masking Carnival music from New Orleans
- 9/2 – The Legendary Ingramettes – gospel from Richmond
- 9/9 – Fran Grace – sacred steel guitar from Ohio
- 9/16 – Black Umfolosi – Imbube singing from Zimbabwe
- 9/23 – Isokratisses – polyphonic singing from Epirus/Albania/Greece
- 9/30 – Sideline – bluegrass from Raleigh
- 10/7 – Son Rompe Pera – Mexican marimba with cumbia and punk energy
Friday, October 13 — 6:30pm – 10:00pm
Saturday, October 14 — 12:00pm – 9:30pm
Sunday, October 15 — 12:00pm – 6:00pm
More information on the festival and additional artists performing will follow later this summer.
For more information about the Richmond Folk Festival, visit RichmondFolkFestival.org. #RVAFolkFest – Text to Give! Text FOLK to 44321
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