Okanagan world music festival expanding in 2016

The event will take place over two days instead of one, on Friday August 26 from 6 – 9 p.m. and on Saturday, Aug. 27 from 4 - 9 p.m.

  • Aug. 11, 2016 5:00 p.m.

Zimbamoto will perform at the West Kelowna World Music Festival later this month

Sounds from around the globe will be brought together for a West Kelowna music festival expected to rock, salsa or buzuk the audience’s socks off.

The West Kelowna World Music Festival, a  free and family friendly event, is taking place Aug.26 and 27.

This  is the fourth year of the event, and there are a few twists. First,  the event will take place over two days instead of one, on Friday August 26 from 6 – 9 p.m. and on Saturday, Aug. 27 from 4 –  9 p.m.

There will also be the Interior Savings KidZone, which features interactive art, music and culture activities on Saturday, Aug. 27 from 4 – 7 p.m. from Barefoot Caravan, Kinshira and more.

For all the changes, however, the heart of the event will be the same world music that has made the event a favourite.

Featuring returning headlining artist En Karma, who played the event in 2014, with bhangra fusion dhol and drum music on Friday and afro-fusion group Zimbamoto on Saturday.

Westbank First Nation artist Cori Derickson opens the festival with a traditional welcome and performance.

Local middle eastern duo Altrab will play with special guest Ferhad Jafo, a professional musician originally from Aleppo, Syria. Ferhad plays the buzuk, a long neck fretted stringed instrument.

“Playing the buzuk, Ferhad brings to the Okanagan valley a unique instrument of the Middle East and a rare opportunity to enrich the culture of our region,” said Altrab leader Trevor Salloum.

Filling out the line-up is local favourites, salsa band Major Mambo and modern folk/funk rockers Wild Son, as well as the hard working Vancouver based gypsy jazz group Deana Knight and the Hot Club of Mars!

Creative Okanagan’s new Executive and Creative Director Karma Lacoff is spearkheading this year’s event and is hoping to build on its previous successes.

“With a different person leading the way, there are bound to be changes, which are seen in the selection of artists, to expanding the event to be two days, to the fresh new look of our promotional materials and changed to the KidZone,” said Lacoff.

“The event enhancements have been possible because of additional sponsorship and the connections I have to the community.”

This City of West Kelowna contracts Creative Okanagan Artist and Event Development Society to produce this event. The event is enhanced significantly by the financial support of sponsors, this year Gorman Brothers Mill’s contribution allowed us to bring in more diverse acts from out of the area, the Rotary Club of Westbank along with Sukwtemsqilxw West Kelowna Arts Council (SWAC) and the Arts Council of the Central Okanagan contributed to the temporary art installation to enhance the physical environment of the festival, and Interior Savings provided funding allowing us to enhance the interactive KidZone focused on art, music and culture. The Holiday Inn West Kelowna is our official hotel sponsor, helping us present artists from outside the Okanagan.

For full event details including artists, KidZone participants, and food vendors visit our website at www.creativeokanagan.com.

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