POWELL RIVER, B.C. – A festival that’s been running for more than three-and-a-half decades is back in Powell River this Labour Day weekend.
The 37th Sunshine Music Festival takes place this Saturday, Sept. 1 and Sunday, Sept. 2.
Billed as a celebration of music from across Canada and the world, the festival is taking place at Palm Beach Park on the waterfront, overlooking the Salish Sea.
Robert Mackle, the festival’s artistic director, said it has evolved from a folk music festival in the early 1980s.
“Like folk music has evolved in many other places, it has here, as well,” Mackle said. “Our music is much beyond ‘folkies’ singing ballads with guitars. We have a very broad range of world music. This year we have some incredible world-class Latin jazz, we’ve got incredible hip-hop, and blues, and R&B, and soul music. The festival has expanded its diversity into that realm of world music, of ethnic music.”
Headliners include award-winning pianist and composer Gabriel Palatchi, who honed his craft under the tutelage of famed Cuban musician and multi-Grammy winner Chucho Valdés.
“Quite the incredible Argentinian piano player,” Mackle said, of Palatchi.
Another headline is the eight-piece band Coco Jafro, which Mackle notes delivers “a combination of reggae and hip-hip and jazz, and R&B and soul.”
Festival goers can also shop at the craft market and enjoy some tasty treats from the many food vendors.
Another star of this weekend’s show will be a new pavilion that built at the park last year.
“It’s a gorgeous post-and-beam environmentally and acoustically designed structure which has now been gifted to the community for other events… and so we’re really happy to have made that available to the community,” Mackle added.
For a list of artists and schedules, click here.
Tickets are available by clicking here, or at the gate.
The festival opens Friday with a free concert at Cranberry Hall from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
The event moves to the park on Saturday and Sunday, with music and festivities happening from noon to 10 p.m. both days.