Despite the less than perfect weather, roughly 100,000 people attended this year’s Richmond Folk Festival, and it was once again standing room only at the Virginia Folklife Area! This year we featured family bands and businesses with the theme “KinFolk: A Celebration of Family Folklife.” We welcomed back old musical favorites like the Whitetop Mountain Band, Elizabeth Laprelle, Maggie Ingram and the Ingramettes, the Harris Brothers, and Cheick Hamala Diabate, and presented many other groups for our first (but certainly not our last) time, including the amazing Snyder Family Band, the Moore Brothers Band, the incredible Holmes Brothers, and the Dry Hill Draggers. Speaking of the Draggers, their family-run moonshine still anchored a dazzling Folklife Traditional Crafts Area that included everything from a traditional Guatemalan Alfombra (colored sawdust carpet) to a beautifully restored 1915 operating carousel.
The Richmond Folk Festival, October 11-13, is one of Virginia’s largest events, drawing visitors from all over the country to Richmond’s historic riverfront. The free three-day event features more than 30 bands on seven stages, continuous music and dance performances, and the Virginia Folklife Area, a stage and craft demonstration area produced by the Virginia Folklife Program.
Whether sung or told, handcrafted or performed, a group’s folklife refers to those “arts of everyday life” that signify a tangible sense of traditional knowledge, shared identity, and connection to community. In this year’s Virginia Folklife Area, we celebrate our closest and most cherished community—the family. Often within families we pass down work skills, musical styles, crafts, recipes, and shared stories from one generation to the next.
Elizabeth LaPrelle & Anna Roberts-Gevalt
Virginia KinFolk: A Celebration of Family Folklife will feature family bands from a variety of different musical traditions on the Virginia Folklife Stage and some of Virginia’s most prominent family businesses and artisans in the Virginia Folklife Crafts Area. The Virginia Folklife Stage and Crafts Area, sponsored by the Richmond Times-Dispatch, are once again produced by the Virginia Folklife Program at the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, with funding support from Virginia is for Lovers.
Richmond Times Dispatch/Virginia Folklife Stage Schedule
Saturday, October 12
12:00-12:45: Elizabeth LaPrelle and Anna Roberts-Gevalt: Family Ballads
1:00-1:45: Snyder Family Band: Bluegrass
2:00-2:45: Harris Brothers: Appalachian Blues
3:00-3:45: The Knicely Family Band: Shenandoah Valley String-band
4:00-4:45:From Central Asia to Virginia: Featuring Alash and Ganna, Zana, and Maral Natsag: Mongolian Dance and Tuvan throat-singing
5:00-6:00: Cheick Hamala Diabate and Family:West African Traditions
Sunday, October 13
12:00-12:45: Dry Hill Draggers: Old Time
1:00–1:45: Mothers,Brothers, and Sisters: Featuring the Knicelys, the Harris Brothers, Maggie Ingram and the Ingramettes, and Emily and Martha Spencer
Moore Brothers Band
2:00-2:45: Moore Brothers Band: Traditional and Progressive Bluegrass
3:00-3:45: Maggie Ingram and the Ingramettes: RichmondGospel
4:00-4:45: Whitetop Mountain Band: Old Time/Country
5:00-5:45: Holmes Brothers: Blues/Gospel
The Richmond Times-Dispatch/Virginia Folklife Area to feature:
Buffalo Brothers Amusements – Carousel Makers, Restorers, and Operators ǁ Staunton, VA
Jimmy Boyd and Family with Lane Rakes – Moonshine Still Operation ǁ Franklin County, VA
Deborah Pratt and Clementine Macon – Oyster Shucking Sisters ǁ Jamaica and Urbanna, VA
Clyde Jenkins and Mary Lou Sours – White Oak Basket Making ǁ Stanley, VA
Ganell Marshall – Corn-shuck Doll Making ǁ St. Paul, VA
Elizabeth LaPrelle and Anna Roberts-Gevalt—Crankie Demonstration ǁ Rural Retreat, VA
Gankhuyag Natsag and Family—Mongolian Mask Makers ǁ Arlington, VA
Patrick and Aaron Olwell—Irish Flute Makers ǁ Nellysford, VA
Ubaldo Sanchez and Family—Alfombra (Guatemalan Sawdust Carpet) Makers ǁArlington, VA
The Virginia Folklife Program is proud to support the work of Flory Jagoda. Please consider making a donation to help keep Sephardic music and many other of Virginia’s cherished traditions alive.
The Virginia Foundation for the Humanities established the Flory Jagoda Sephardic Music Fund, named in honor of the courageous woman and talented musician who has made it her life’s work to preserve the songs and stories of the Sephardic culture of her childhood.