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Branches and Roots music festival celebrates Canada’s 150th

Annual Haut-Saint-Laurent folk festival draws a crowd.


Publié le 5 juillet 2017

Members of the Rockburn Carolers celebrating Canada’s 150th.

©Emily Southwood

The 15th edition of the Branches and Roots music festival took place over Canada Day weekend in Ormstown. Performances weren’t dampened by the drizzly weather as several of the planned outdoor festivities were rerouted indoors to Village Church and Gigzz Café.

The well-attended weekend boasted many musical acts from Friday through Sunday, and offered fun family activities like ukulele building and square dancing for all.

This was the first year that the three-day, annual music festival was organized around Canada Day. In celebration of our nation’s 150th birthday, Artistic Director Stewart Burrows designed the line up to highlight an array of great Canadian music. Live talent abounded, with everything from fiddlers, folk, blues, and bluegrass bands, to gospel music from local choirs. “We had a really great turn out with many new faces in the crowd, which is always encouraging.” he said. “I’m always happy to attract new audiences.” True to the festival’s mandate to promote regional talent, Haut-Saint-Laurent musical favorites performed throughout the weekend including Kim and Eddy Lawrence and the Durham County Poets.

The sun decided to make a late afternoon appearance on Sunday as the weekend concluded with foot-tapping bluegrass music from the Mud Flat Ramblers and moving gospel. The audience joined in on the uplifting musical selections which were themed to celebrate the country’s 150th, as well as tribute Montreal’s 375th. Local singers also performed a poignant rendition of Amazing Grace in three languages—Mohawk, French and English, with musical accompaniment from the Chennaniah Band.

For more information on the much-loved annual event search Branches and Roots Folk Music Festival on Facebook.