Tenth Annual

Princeton Traditional Music Festival

Friday 18 to Sunday 20 August ~ 2017


The Festival presents concerts by individual performing groups and also workshops. A workshop focuses on a particular topic and is presented by a panel of singers and musicians who are on the stage at the same time. A host will introduce the panel and guide the workshop.


TRADITIONAL BALLADS from the Child Collection
 Saturday 11 – 12 pm Museum Stage
Ballads are songs that tell stories. Traditional ballads are ones that have been passed down over hundreds of years telling stories of love, murder and passion. Today’s balladeers are Rosaleen Gregory, Lyn Pinkerton, Michael Pratt and Emily Van Lidth de Jeude.

 Saturday 12:30 – 1:30 pm Vermilion Stage
Put a bunch of passionate Celtic fiddlers, guitar players, flautists, pipers, and the like on stage together and see what happens!

 Saturday 1:30 – 2:15 pm Gazebo next to Vermilion Stage
In the days of the tall ships sailors used to sing songs called “shanties” while they worked. Shanties provided the rhythm that went with a particular job as well as giving sailors extra “oomph” to raise a sail or haul up the anchor. They’re great fun to sing along with, so join the throng under the gazebo!

 Saturday 3:30 – 4:30 pm, Museum Stage
The fiddle is the powerhouse of the band and the centrepiece of the session. Today’s fiddlers are Elaine Bradtke, Michael Burnyeat, Immanuel, Francis and Robert McKenty, and Brad Reynolds.

 Sunday 11:30 am – 12:30 pm Vermilion Stage
There are many jokes about banjos, but when played well they are a joy to the ear. This session features five banjo virtuosos who will delight you with their frailing and finger picking -- Brian Chisholm, Tim Hall, David Lowther, Mike Marker and Jerry Middaugh.

 Sunday 12 – 1 pm Museum Stage
Trolling for salmon, gillnetting for salmon, canning salmon – you’ll hear songs about all of these in this session. Some of the songs go back more than 80 years, others are more recent. All of them were made by people who work or worked in the fishing industry. Sharing the musical culture of this work will be Jon Bartlett and Rika Ruebsaat, Linda Chobotuck,Mary Garvey, Brian Robertson and Chris Roe.

 Sunday 2 – 3 pm Vermilion Stage
There are many instruments that use air to make music. Most often the air is supplied by someone’s breath, such as woodwind instruments. On uilleann pipes, however, the air is supplied by a bellows that fills the air bag and is then squeezed into the chanters. In this session you will hear Rick Blacklaws on shuttle pipes, Hugh Brock on Irish flute, Jason Hall on the tárogató (a Hungarian relative of the clarinet), Mary Lowther on clarinet, Bill MacLachlan on whistle and.John Walsh on uilleann pipes.

  Sunday 3 - 4 pm Museum Stage
We are blessed this year with a wealth of free reed musicians. You will hear concertinas, harmonicas, button accordions, piano accordions and melodeons. Today’s musicians are Graham Baldwin, Ieva McKenty, Harry O’Neill, Orville Murphy, Michael Pratt and Brad Reynolds.

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, the Province of British Columbia, and the Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage Program of Canadian Heritage.

We thank you all!

Festival Audience



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