For the kids and families at Folklife Festival

The Discovery Zone is the place to be for kids and their grownups at the Festival! In addition to music, dance and workshops on the stage, the Discovery Zone is jam packed with hands on activities presented by Folklife partners every day of the festival. If you’re feeling artsy, crafty, or just plain curious, there’s a little something to fit every mood.

A full list of activities available at the Discovery Zone is listed below:

Gage Academy of Art
“Gage Pop-Up Drawing Jam”

Come unleash your inner artist! Whether you are a young Rembrandt, a comic book artist, a stick figure sketcher, or just like to express yourself, Gage presents a chance to drop in and draw at Folklife. Gage provides free professional art supplies, costumed models from bunny rabbits to comic heroes, easels, still life set ups, and lots of encouragement.

Photo by Christopher Nelson

Photo by Christopher Nelson

The Center for Wooden Boats
“Toy Boat Building”

Grab a hull, a mast, and some traditional tools and build your own boat! Decorate it, give it a name, and sail it wherever your imagination takes you.

Seattle Children’s Museum
“Exploring Rhythm”

Hungry for a bite-sized sample of the Seattle Children’s Museum?
Visit our booth to explore marbles, motion, and music, all in the same fun-filled package! Kids can explore independently or collaboratively as they make music with their bodies, marbles, and other everyday materials.

Northwest African American Museum
“Posing Beauty: Finding the Beauty Within”

Inspired by the exhibition Posing Beauty in African American Culture, families are invited to explore notions of inner beauty through art. Make art cards using word tiles and images to create miniature collages to share or trade with friends and families about what makes someone beautiful on the inside.

Nature Consortium

Folklife 2014 - Friday

Photo by Christopher Nelson

“Discover Nature through Art”

Make your own jewelry, hats, or bird feeders that explore elements of the natural environment and learn the how and why of making art with up cycled materials. In the process visitors can learn how common packaging can impact the world, explore alternative options, and work with ‘trash’ to create art.

 

Light in the Attic Friday and Saturday Only:
“This Record Belongs To _______: An Introduction to the Magic of Vinyl Records”

Light in the Attic Records loves music and so do you! We hope to share our passion by teaching the little ones the interactive experience of holding an album in your hands, putting needle to groove, and immersing yourself in the pages of a record’s sleeve as the music plays.

 

Visual Arts at Folklife

All four days of the Northwest Folklife Festival you can experience a wide range of art in the Fountain Pavilion at Seattle Center, including the multimedia projects of local artist, director, curator, and activist Tracy Rector. You can read more about Rector and her work in Seattle in the Stranger here. Ranging from photography to weaving to mixed media, Rector has organized the following exhibitions which highlight the unique experience of indigenous peoples of the region.

You can visit these exhibitions in the International Fountain Pavilion, Friday – Monday May 27-30th

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Photo by in·dig·e·nize

in·dig·e·nize
Organized by Tracy Rector and Melissa Ponder

As an unapologetic portrait essay of Indigenous people currently living in the Pacific Northwest, in·dig·e·nize, refocuses our gaze upon the enormous diversity in our region’s Native communities. As a joint legacy project by creative director Tracy Rector and photographer Melissa Ponder, this exhibit honors of all those who contributed to and participated in the celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day and to those Natives who call Seattle home!

Stephen Paul Judd 1

Steven Paul Judd

In Search of Steven Paul Judd

A groundbreaking artist and pioneer in visual storytelling, Steven Paul Judd (Kiowa/Choctaw) will bring to Seattle selections from his pop icon and cultural art creations, prints, digital media, and films. Stay tuned for more information about Judd’s exhibition and interactive opportunities with the artist at the festival!

People of the Salish Sea
People of the Salish Sea is the interactive, transmedia platform for the upcoming documentary film Clearwater, the story of the unique relationship between tribal peoples and the waters of the Salish Sea (Puget Sound). For nearly 15,000 years the Indigenous people of the Pacific Northwest have called these waters home, and have time and again had to adapt to environmental, social and political changes in order to survive…and now thrive. The exhibition will consist of rich visual art, cultural demonstrations, textiles and in-person experiences that will connect the communities of the Salish Sea to the hearts of the viewing audiences.

Watch an excerpt of the film Clearwater

 

  https://plus.google.com/collection/smKusB Gokkasten + Casino Spelletjes

Volunteer Spotlight: Julia Brewer

Volunteer Spotlight Julia Brewer
How long have you been Volunteering at the Northwest Folklife Festival?

Well technically I have been volunteering every year since 1997, but I was 2 at that age so I basically just helped/hung around with my mom while she volunteered. As I got older I was able to take on more responsibilities and really contribute to Folklife.

Another form of volunteering is performing at the festival. I have been performing at Folklife with Melody Xie Chinese Dance Institute since 2002-2013, which I have really enjoyed.

 What position(s) do you take on at the Festival?

Over the years my mom and I have done various volunteer positions, such as greeter, button selling and vendor assistant. But our favorite position is volunteer registration. My mom and I usually take the first shifts possible. We get to the grounds around 8am, so that after the shift we can possibly volunteer for more shifts if needed or we have the whole day to enjoy the various activities the festival holds.

The volunteers and staff members that I get to work with are just amazing and I get to meet others who enjoy giving back to the festival as well, which makes getting up so early not as bad.

 Please share a funny story, good memory, or tip for new volunteers!

A good memory I have is sharing my love for Folklife with my boyfriend and friends. I have also taught several of my friends and my boyfriend how to Contra dance. So few young individuals know what Contra dancing is or how to do it, so I think it is important to teach as many of the younger generation how to Contra dance so that it does not die out. I also love staying late every day of the festival so that I can get as much Contra dancing in as I can.

A tip for new volunteers would be, to remember to smile and to just have fun with the experiences. Folklife is the friendliest festival in Seattle, so you should just sit back and enjoy your time the best you can. Even though Folklife needs the volunteers, I would also suggest that high schools students that are trying to complete their service learning hours, to try not to procrastinate to until the end to get all their necessary hours; although it is funny trying to jam as many shifts as possible into their day.

Interested in Volunteering at the Festival? Sign-up HERE today!
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Your Support Creates Ties Behind the Scenes

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With so much to see, do, and experience at the Northwest Folklife Festival, have you ever been amazed at all there is to miss? Much of the Festival programming is the culmination of year-round creative work behind the scenes in the Northwest Folklife offices. Your support is at work all year to create opportunities to build partnerships and collaborations with folks in the arts, culture, heritage, and education eco-systems. That is what makes the Northwest Folklife Festival unique: we collaborate behind the scenes directly with communities to showcase their culture and traditions, then build connections between artist and audience. So, even if you don’t get a chance to see every performance and showcase, you can be sure that your gift makes something truly momentous happen for many folks of all ages.

Your donation creates opportunities for a lifetime.

Meet Leija Farr. Named the City of Seattle’s first Youth Poet Laureate at Folklife Festival 2015 after fierce competition with eight 14-19 year old finalists, Leija calls poetry a form of “self-healing.” She’s spent the past year on tour throughout Seattle as a young poet, and she received a book deal to publish her first manuscript of poems. Come hear Leija share her ‘year in the life’ story at Folklife 2016. Experience plentiful poetry as this year’s youth poet laureate competition follows Leija’s presentation, featuring talented literary artists with a passion for civic and community engagement, poetry and performance, human relations, diversity and education throughout Seattle.

Your support strengthens communities through arts and culture.

Folklife Festival Showcases expand on the idea of a performance, to present a genre or culture in depth. In partnership with Community Coordinators, Northwest Folklife collaborates to find the appropriate blend of creative components that express the essence of the genre or culture. Folklife 2016 features 152 showcases! New collaborators include Japanese, Peruvian and Polish communities along with Festival Sundiata – Black Arts Fest and Idaho’s Treefort Music Fest for indie roots.

Your gift illuminates living traditions.

Come participate and learn the folklife side of opera. You might wonder why the Seattle Opera is planning a participatory opera, ‘Our Earth,’ to present at the Northwest Folklife Festival 2016. Well, opera is actually one of the great living traditions with deep roots and rejuvenating branches, an exceptional form of folklife.

Would you like to make Northwest Folklife strong for our continually evolving community? ‘1,000 for the Future’ is one way to do so!

Two long-time Friends of Folklife have created a way for you to do just that with a matching gift opportunity: ‘1,000 for the Future.’ Our Friends have pledged to match new gifts to Northwest Folklife of $1,000 or more, or $1,000 over your previous year’s giving, up to $25,000. With their gift, they are demonstrating their belief that participation in the arts is as important as observing them. Will you join them?

Your gift makes the Folklife magic happen!

Your donation creates opportunities for a lifetime. Discoveries at the Northwest Folklife Festival are personal, shared with neighbors from near and far. These unique shared cultural experiences connect people with one another through opportunities that you just don’t find elsewhere.

Youth become inspired. Elders become mentors. Your gift is important to sustain Northwest Folklife and its iconic Festival celebrating cultural traditions, this year and for future generations.

Become a Friend of Folklife today.

We welcome hearing from you! Please contact our Development Director Sheila Siden at 206.233.3953 or sheila @ nwfolklife.org to learn more about these programs, and to have your questions answered.

Community Powered!

Samba OlyWA

What is Community Power?

The Northwest Folklife Festival is a phenomenon. Do you think it could get off the ground if we tried to start it today? Here’s the pitch: Let’s put on a participatory arts and culture Festival featuring the folklife (a word actually missing from most dictionaries) and living traditions of all the Northwest communities we can possibly reach out to, newcomer and native alike. Let’s work one-on-one with hundreds of communities and artists to share and celebrate their arts and cultural traditions the way they want to have them presented. If a community is not quite ready, let’s find a small step they can take to participate in a meaningful way, and get them connected to the greater community. Then, with these 5,000 or so musicians, dancers and artists, let’s put on a four-day Festival and not charge admission! We want everyone to have access. Let’s make it a massive pay-what-you-can art event. Do you think the Northwest Folklife Festival idea could fly if we started it today?

The Northwest Folklife Festival thrives and continues to evolve with the people of the Pacific Northwest because it is community-powered, and has been for 45 years. Here’s how:

Samba OlyWA

The heart of our community power is the thousands of individuals who contribute their talent and time to participate in Northwest Folklife programming. For the Folklife Festival, that starts with a call for artist applications every fall. Last year, Northwest Folklife implemented a call for Cultural Focus as well. Communities’ and individuals’ responses to these calls are the basis for programmatic themes going forward.  Northwest Folklife programming staff sort proposals by genre and discipline, looking to represent the arts, cultures and traditions of all who apply. A committee of arts practitioners additionally guides Cultural Focus programming. (Learn more about Northwest Folklife’s Cultural Focus program and the communities we’ve worked with through the years.)

Northwest Folklife’s community power is all about self–expression. Performers, participants, patrons: we all believe that participation in the arts is as important as observing them. Northwest Folklife creates opportunities, and over 1,000 musicians, dancers and artists answer our call for participation. The notion of celebrating, sharing, and participating in the evolving cultural traditions of the Pacific Northwest captures the imagination of folks who want to be part of a movement; a community undertaking, in which we envision strong communities through arts and culture. Volunteers help paint this canvas by fulfilling important jobs. And, as an organization, Northwest Folklife makes it so, behind the scenes, nurturing relationships and exploring possibilities all year.

Community Power comes in the form of our public-private partnership with the City of Seattle. Northwest Folklife, an independent 501(c)-3 nonprofit organization, partners with Seattle Center, a department of the City of Seattle, to produce the annual Folklife Festival and the Seattle Children’s Festival. Northwest Folklife is a member of the Festal community of ethnic festivals. The City of Seattle’s in-kind investment in Northwest Folklife’s work supports around 45% of direct expenses, powering Northwest Folklife and our capacity to strengthen communities through arts and culture. Programs are further supported by Friends of Folklife and other donors, funders, sponsors, vendors, and craft and food merchants.

Community Power is everything. Northwest Folklife stands for the belief that the arts invigorate and revitalize interpersonal connections and sense of community. When people share aspects of their culture, opportunities are created to dissolve misunderstandings, break down stereotypes, and increase respect for one another. We invite YOU to participate in dance, workshops, jams, and the choral courtyard when you attend the Folklife Festival. Come and meet your neighbor!

Community Power is about everyone joining together to create strong communities through arts and culture. Join us. Get involved. Or, just come on down, drop in this Memorial Day weekend: May 27-May 30 to explore the evolving cultural traditions of the Pacific Northwest at the Northwest Folklife Festival.

Community Powered!

Join us for a PreFest Party!

Naomi Wachira

Let’s commence the 45th annual Northwest Folklife Festival with a soiree!

Please accompany us as we kick off this year’s Folklife Festival with some friendly folks and amusing entertainment. This 21 and over event is a sneak peek on what’s to come at this year’s Festival and will feature The Warren G. Hardings, Jacob Miller and the Bridge City Crooners, Naomi Wachira and Ben Hunter & Joe Seamons. You don’t want to miss out, because the PreFest Party happens this one night only!

The PreFest Party will take place at Seattle’s largest indoor / outdoor music venue, Nectar Lounge; located in the Fremont district on 412 N 36th St, Seattle, Washington 98103. Doors open at 8:00PM. Music starts at 8:30PM. Tickets are $8 in advance and $12 at the door.

Buy tickets and RSVP now on our Facebook page here:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1729847697261459/

 

 

 

 

Warren's Roadhouse 2015. Photo Credit: Doug Plummer

Thanks To Help From Our Friends

Do you Sing? Dance? Play? Do you believe that art can change lives? Your gifts create a very special community that does all that and more. Your support creates a haven for self-expression and countless opportunities to hear new voices and share your own.  Today, we are asking for your help to continue the tradition. Please take a moment to make a donation today: show your love for Folklife as a Friend of Folklife donor.

Warren's Roadhouse 2015. Photo Credit: Doug Plummer

Warren’s Roadhouse 2015. Photo Credit: Doug Plummer.

A celebration of the many cultural roots that nurture our community … the Northwest Folklife Festival encourages everyone to get at least a little taste of something outside their usual world …                       ~ Jerry Large – The Seattle Times

You can champion Northwest Folklife’s future, too! Two dedicated Friends of Folklife will match new gifts of $1,000 or more from corporations and individuals, or $1,000 over your previous year’s giving, in a campaign called ‘1,000 for the Future’ through 9/30/2016! With their gift, these Friends are demonstrating their belief that participation in the arts is as important as observing them. Will you or your business join them? Please contact our Development Director Sheila Siden at 206.233.3953 or sheila @ nwfolklife.org to learn more.

Support from Friends of Folklife has created a home for all cultures and traditions, celebrating its 45th year! As the cultural landscape of our region evolves, so does Northwest Folklife. To do that, we collaborate with community coordinators all year. In 2016, Northwest Folklife will program over 5,000 performers in 65 different genres of music, from Hawaiian to Hip-Hop. Dance performances will represent cultures from Ireland to India. Come join fellow dancers swinging at Warren’s Roadhouse!

Your gift to Northwest Folklife makes the Folklife magic happen. Give online today at this link, or mail your donation to Northwest Folklife 305 Harrison Street Seattle, WA 98109. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Rob Townsend, Executive Director & Friend of Folklife Donor; and, Rafael Maslan, Board President & Friend of Folklife Donor

P.S. Friends of Folklife enjoy perqs, like an invitation to enjoy the oasis of the Friends of Folklife Headquarters at the Northwest Folklife Festival in May and the Seattle Children’s Festival in October. Give Today, and join us for fun times this May!

Did you apply to perform at the 2016 Folklife Festival?

Folklife 2014 - FridayThank you for applying to perform at the 45th annual Folklife Festival – May 27 – 30, 2016. Applicants will be hearing back from the Programming team the second week of March! If you do not recieve an email by the end of March, please feel free to reach out to us at programming@nwfolklife.org. And thank you again for applying~!

The annual Northwest Folklife Festival is the largest community-powered arts festival in the United States. It is presented each year in Seattle by Northwest Folklife, a year-round nonprofit organization dedicated to creating opportunities for all people to appreciate, share, and participate in the evolving traditions of the Pacific Northwest.

Last year Northwest Folklife programmed over 5,000 performers in 65 different genres of music, from Hawaiian to hip-hop. We presented dance performances representing cultures from Ireland to India. We believe everyone is a bearer of folk arts, and we encourage communities to share their cultural traditions, in the hope that interaction with new audiences will enrich the community as much as the audience.

Wintergrass is this weekend!

wintergrass

Wintergrass Festival, a family friendly celebration of Bluegrass music, is a four day long festival held at the Hyatt in Bellevue starting this Thursday the 28th. At Folklife, we’re thrilled to see such an impressive lineup with familiar names from festivals past and future!

With four stages filled with music, dances, workshops, and jam sessions, you’ll be sure to find something for your Americana, Bluegrass, and fiddle lovin’ heart.

For more information including the lineup and how to buy tickets, visit the website wintergrass.com.

Arts and Nature Festival

 

Arts in Nature Festival. Image by Kim Doyel

Arts in Nature Festival 2015. Image by Kim Doyel

Arts and Nature Festival is an intimate and eclectic experience of art and performance in the woods of Seattle’s only camp ground, Camp Long. Check out highlight’s from last year’s festival here.

Northwest Folklife is thrilled to partner with the Nature Consortium for the 2016 Arts and Nature Festival. Stay tuned for a full line up including acts presented by Folklife!

 

EMP Museum kicks off 15th Annual Sound Off! Competition

This weekend kicks off the fifteenth year of Sound Off!, the annual 21 and under battle of the bands competition put on by the EMP Museum. Semifinals will take place over the next three Saturdays with the winners from the semifinals, as well as the wild card band, facing off on Saturday, March 5th.

Saturday, February 13, 2016
Semifinals #1 featuring Copalis, COSMOS, Jazzy Tee, and Party Shark

Saturday, February 20, 2016
Semifinals #2 featuring Animal Camera, Crews, Paris Alexa, and Travis Thompson

Saturday, February 27, 2016
Semifinals #3 featuring Dre’zy and Too Smoove; Hello, I’m Sorry; Paralexis; and LEE

Saturday, March 5, 2016
Finals featuring the winning band from each Semifinals round plus the wild card winner.

Northwest Folklife is proud to be a part of this ongoing program and celebration of young artists in our community. You can catch two of the semifinalists from Sound Off! at Folklife this year on Saturday morning. Stay tuned for more information as we get closer to the festival.

Past competitors of Sound Off! include: The Lonely Forest, Manatee Commune, Sol, Dyme Def, Brothers from Another, One Above Below None, and many more.

To read artist bios or to purchase tickets for Sound Off!, CLICK HERE

Show Your Love for Folklife Benefit Concert

'Show Your Love for Folklife' Benefit Concert

Northwest Folklife has supported us and many others in becoming the musicians and artists that we are, and has for 45 years! So, we are ‘giving back’ by putting on this Night for Folklife benefit concert. We envision a microcosm of the Northwest Folklife Festival. One of the great things about the Festival is that everyone is welcome. Like the Festival, this concert mixes it up and invites bands from a lot of different musical sub-cultures. The program is an amalgam of musical genres: a snapshot of the music happening in Seattle. We each have our particular influences. We all have a passion for the whole musical community, and we see the same bands tending to play together. So this event is mixing and matching, creating a mosaic of the musical community like the Northwest Folklife Festival does.

14293_444827775576902_827139984_nShow Your Love for Folklife is our theme, in keeping with Valentine’s Day and the love everyone feels for Northwest Folklife. The evening will feature great bands including Whitney MongéTiny MessengersTekla WaterfieldHoney Mustard SeattleLuke Stanton – Music, and Angie Lynn! Karen Zamm of KZ Music Media will be our host.

We grew up as musicians at the Festival. A lot of us have been playing together for thirty years, and that is the only time we play together all year. The Festival gives us an aggregation of different cultures in Seattle, and musical sub-cultures. It’s fantastic when you have rock in one corner and folk in another, dancers in another, and everyone doing their thing. A story gets told there in our artistic expression: the story of our collective cultures. It’s not just a bunch of diverse modalities, Folklife is also an anchor and opportunity for the old and new to mix together.

We believe Northwest Folklife is worthy of our support and we hope people join us in giving!

See you on Friday, February 12! The show starts at 7 pm, $8 admission. You can expect surprise guests, a raffle, prizes, and other great stuff!  Proceeds support Northwest Folklife. Sponsored by the Seattle Acoustic Festival and generously hosted by the Conor Byrne Pub.

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RSVP to Show Your Love For Folklife

Can’t attend but want to donate? Become a Friend of Folklife today.

More about Nights for Folklife.

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Posted by Sheila, composed from an interview with organizer Tobias the Owl.