FEST: 2020 Richmond Folk Festival

Posted by:  National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA)  | When:  –  | Where: Richmond, Virginia, USA

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The National Council for the Traditional Artists (NCTA) is seeking traditional musicians and dancers to perform at the 2020 Richmond Folk Festival, happening Oct. 9-11. 

Selected artists are paid an honorarium.

The Opportunity

The annual Richmond Folk Festival is a multicultural celebration of traditional music, dance, food, and crafts that presents national and international artists representing diverse cultures. It is one of Virginia's largest and most loved events and has been voted the best music festival in Richmond. Over three days, the free-to-the-public event attracts crowds in excess of 200,000. The festival books up to 25 performing groups, who are scheduled throughout the weekend on seven outdoor stages. 

The Richmond Folk Festival is produced by Venture Richmond in partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA).

Past Performers Include: Trouble Funk, Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Julie Fowlis, Shemekia Copeland, Zakir Hussain, Aurelio Martinez, Dale Ann Bradley, Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys, Bombino, Hot Club of Cowtown, Maceo Parker. 

The Band

  • Music and dance submissions must adhere to the definition of Folk & Traditional Arts provided by the National Endowment for the Arts (see T&Cs) 
  • Additional genres accepted are Appalachian, African Diaspora, Cowboy, Eastern European, Novelty/Variety, Storytelling
  • Artists applying to this festival need not apply to the National and Lowell Folk Festivals, which are also produced by the NCTA

The Gig


  • Set lengths range from 45-90 minutes
  • Professional sound and lighting provided
  • Sound engineer provided
  • Outdoor stages
  • Backline provided (including guitar/bass amps, keyboards, drums, percussion)
Additional Compensation Details:
  • Artists provided honorarium negotiated at the time of booking
  • Travel, hotel, and meals provided
  • Artists keep 85% of merchandise sales

Terms And Conditions

The folk and traditional arts are rooted in and reflective of the cultural life of a community. Community members may share a common ethnic heritage, cultural mores, language, religion, occupation, or geographic region. These vital and constantly reinvigorated artistic traditions are shaped by values and standards of excellence that are passed from generation to generation, most often within family and community, through demonstration, conversation, and practice.


  • Compensation Amount: Determined at time of booking

Apply by May 29, 2020

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