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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
johnross Seattle Folklife Memorial Day Weekend (94* d) RE: Seattle Folklife Memorial Day Weekend 27 May 04

Aw gee, you guys, I'm just a small cog in the large machine that makes the Folklife Festival happen every year. There are dozens of people who do as much as I do, and many who do a lot more. As far as I'm concerned, it's a community barnraising, where we all do what we can to make the thing work.

The Northwest Folklife Festival is very specifically trying to present the things that people do for their own entertainment, and that they make for their own use. So the ethnic dance groups who practice in church basements and the old-time fiddlers' shows that include seven-year-old kids who haven't quite got all the notes right are just as important as the musicians who play in clubs several times a month. Maybe more.

That's a very different mandate from most festivals, which are intended as entertianment events where people come to see and hear performers who are there to entertain them. Folk festivals like Philadelphia and Vancouver are organized to present high-quality musicians to appreciative audiences. We want to expose people to the cultures of their neighbors.

Both approaches are valid, butthey produce quite different events.

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