Old Songs Folk Festival

Old Songs Folk Festival
Photo: festival.oldsongs.org
The Old Songs Folk Festival is an annual festival of traditional music and dance held in the village of Altamont, New York the last full weekend in June. The festival encompasses a variety of music genres including folk, traditional, Celtic and World music.

The inaugural Old Songs Festival of Traditional Music and Dance was held in 1981 at Tawasentha Park in the city of Guilderland, New York. It was the successor of the Fox Hollow Festival that took place in Petersburgh, New York each August from 1966 to 1980. After its first year, the Old Songs Festival was relocated to the Altamont Fairgrounds where it has been held ever since. The event is held the last full weekend of June, Friday through Sunday, offering an impressive array of performances and activities.

The Old Songs Folk Festival is a family-friendly festival known for its relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, participatory nature, a series of workshops and interactive sessions and hands-on experience. It offers three days of exciting events and activities for visitors of all ages and backgrounds.

The program of the festival features three big concerts on the main stage, one every evening, starting at 6 pm. In addition to these concerts, there are more than 100 daytime performances, dances and workshops. Some of the events featured in the program include performing arts workshops, instrument learn-hows, dances (Contras, English Country, Community & Family dances), musical sessions, participatory jam sessions, special events for children and families, food and instrument vendors, an arts & crafts fair, a juried craft show (pottery, jewelry, clothing, instruments), and a children activity area.

One of the festival’s main highlights is the Great Groove Band. It is a free participatory program for children which includes three rehearsal sessions with the festival coaches culminating with a main stage performance on Sunday. Kids can bring their own instruments or participate as vocalists. The Old Songs Festival also hosts the Instrument Exchange. Musicians can bring their unused instruments to sell them and buy instruments they’ll use instead.

Old Songs

Photo: festival.oldsongs.org




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