BVCA presents Celebrating Together festival

The Bulkley Valley Concert Association brings workshops Friday and a festival Saturday.

Bulkley Valley Concert Association is excited to invite the many communities of the Bulkley Valley to ’Alhk’ikh Nuuyegh Ts’italïlh | Celebrating Together | Célébrer Ensemble, a day-long music festival at Bovill Square on this Saturday featuring Indigenous recording artists Kinnie Starr, Diyet, Sister Says, Joel West and local artists.

We open the event with community workshops on July 21. Celebrating Together is part two of three events presented by BVCA’s summer 2017 performance series, Walking Together.

“These events are taking place on Witsuwit’en house territories and we are working diligently to follow proper protocols and respect the lands in which we live, work, and play together,” says community engagement facilitator Molly Wickham.

As hearing your own language spoken is an important factor in people feeling welcome and respected, events and workshops will be introduced in three languages — Witsuwit’en, English and French.

On Friday, visiting artists will offer songwriting workshops, giving community members a chance to meet visiting artists in person, have fun and build artistic capacity in our community. Workshops will be held in both Moricetown and Smithers and are free and open to the public.

The workshops will be followed by Saturday’s day of music, dancing and celebration.

“The day will begin at 12 p.m. with an opening ceremony that acknowledges Witsuwit’en territory and welcomes audience members to enjoy a day of coming together as a diverse community, “ says lead coordinator River Wilde. “From there, the event moves into the music of both local and world-renowned artists.”

The day includes Kinnie Starr, a genre-defying artist who moves from hip hop to art-pop, folk to spoken word with eclectic grace. Diyet joins us from the Yukon, bringing alternative folk, roots, country and traditional Aboriginal with melodies and stories deeply rooted in her Indigenous world view and northern life. Sister Says is a soulful indie pop group based out of Vancouver. Joel West is a talented Lake Babine Nation singer, songwriter and musician already well known and beloved in our community.

The day is free and family friendly. The Smithers Public Library will be offering face painting and local food trucks will join us in the streets. There is a free shuttle running between Moricetown and Smithers. Bring a chair, bring a blanket and settle in for an amazing day!

For workshop, performance and bus shuttle schedule: bvca.me.

Submitted by BVCA.