Eighth Annual

Princeton Traditional Music Festival

Friday 14 to Sunday 16 August ~ 2015

Audience in Veteran's Square

If you like Celtic music this festival is for you. This year ten out of the 55 performing groups play Celtic music. From the high-energy performances of Blackthorn and the Irish Wakers to the fiddle virtuosity of Annie Brown, Athena McKown and Michael Burnyeat, the Celtic menu will slake your thirst for this kind of music.

For a while we thought we weren't going to have any morris dancers at the Festival this year. But the good old Vancouver Morris Men have come through and if we're really nice to them they might even do a mummer's play.

The 2015 Music Festival will be our 8th. The basic plan will be similar to previous years. The festival will begin on the Friday with an opening ceremony, a band, and a dance. On Saturday and Sunday, August 15 and 16 there will be music from 10 am until 6 pm right in downtown Princeton. There will be an exciting lineup of new talent together with many familiar faces from past years.

The Traditional Music Festival presents music that comes out of communities where people participate in music-making. The Festival tries to provide this sense of participation by remaining intimate. Performers are close to the audience and invite them to participate by singing along or by dancing. The ultimate participatory experience at the Festival is the Shanty Session under the gazebo in Veterans’ Square. Shanties are songs that were sung by sailors on tall ships. The songs helped sailors work in rhythm and gave them extra oomph while raising sails or hauling in the anchor. Shanties were led by a shantyman, an experienced sailor who knew the right rhythm for each job. Shanties also had simple choruses that were easy to learn and sing so that everyone could join in.

The Shanty Session is just one of the events taking place at this year’s Festival. The best thing about it is that it’s free – no admission is charged. It’s run entirely by volunteers including the musicians.

RDOS    Princeton    BC logo

The Festival

Admission is FREE.  Events are held on several stages in the centre of Princeton and begin on Friday evening with a public street dance and an Irish ceili band. Between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday there's a potpourri of concerts, workshops, and jams.

The Scene

This event is primarily for and about the performers. Traditional Music lacks venue in the west, so players, singers, dancers, and fans are willing to travel in order to meet up. Professional performers are making personal sacrifices in order to be here, but the many people who come just to listen attests to the unique value of this event. For those new to the Festival please have a look at the Our Story page to learn about how it started and what Traditional Music means to us.


The Place

Nestled among rolling hills of ranchland, the little town of Princeton is the gateway to the Okanagan. About 300 km from Vancouver, it is the first town after Hope along the Crowsnest Highway. Summers are hot and dry - just what we like for our festival which takes place mostly in the streets.


In addition to the sponsors, this festival is primarily supported by hard work and artists who perform for free. However, we aim to pay for artist's meals and at least part of their transportation costs. Please consider contributing in order to help maintain this important cultural event.

Become a Member

You can support the continuing operation of the festival by buying a $10 membership.


Every year we need a stage crew, MCs, office staff, and many other important helpers. If you want to be part of this exciting event in this way, please let us know. volunteers@princetontraditional.org


We encourage the sale of food, crafts, art, and more at the Festival. Please contact the Vendor Coordinator. vendors@princetontraditional.org


Funding for the Festival comes from donations, as well as grants from the Town of Princeton, the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen, and the Province of British Columbia.

We thank you all!

Festival Audience



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