Cha Wa was one of the highlights onstage at last year’s MusicFest. On July 10, organizers are holding an online Facebook celebration to mark the weekend that was supposed to be this year’s festival. Record file photo

Annual music event in Comox Valley celebrates online instead

Vancouver Island MusicFest holds virtual celebration set for July 10

The upcoming weekend was to be the time when Lucinda Williams, Corb Lund and others brought their musical talents to the Vancouver Island Music Festival in the Comox Valley.

Like so many other events, this year’s festival, set for July 10 through 12, was cancelled in response to health restrictions aimed at controlling the spread of COVID-19.

The festival organizers, though, do not want the weekend to pass without some sort of celebration, so they have organized an online broadcast to celebrate MusicFest on their Facebook page starting Friday, July 10 starting at 7 p.m. MusicFest artistic director Doug Cox isn’t sure, but they might do a second evening on Saturday, July 11, depending on how many contributions he gets.

“Right now, it’s Friday night for sure,” he said. “It might end up being longer.”

RELATED STORY: COVID-19 forces cancellation of Vancouver Island MusicFest

When the Record spoke to him, he was in the midst of editing the many submissions that have come in already.

“There’s going to be all kinds of archival stuff. There’s clips that performers have been sending me,” he said. “There’s all kinds of clips from our volunteers and our staff.”

For this online event, they have asked people to contribute a video greeting or memory to the celebration. They’ve also asked performers to contribute a song, though they remind people if they’re using cell phones to shoot sideways – in other words, to orient the image horizontally or “landscape.” The sound quality also needs to be clear. The deadline is Monday.

“The stuff has been coming in like mad,” Cox said. “It’s really been heartening. It’s been a really fun thing to be working on…. I really want it to be about the spirit of the festival.”

They are planning some surprises and special guests as part of the event. Cox does not want to give details, but he’s said he has had contributions from as far away as England and Los Angeles, along with people closer to home.

“They’re from all over the place,” he said.

As important as the artists’ contributions have been, Cox is just as impressed by some of what festival volunteers have had to say in their submissions about what the event means. He says he has watched a lot of other similar Internet broadcasts recently, and he thinks this one will stand out.

“This is, sort of, one of the most heartfelt, cool ones I think anybody’s going to see,” he said.

People can watch for themselves via the Vancouver Island MusicFest Facebook page on Friday – and maybe Saturday.

Cox also took part in a livestream “concert in the round” event for the fest in late June, performing with The Harpoonist, Carolyn Mark and Corwin Fox. He admits it was a little strange playing without an audience but was still fun.

“We had a good time,” he added. “It was really nice for all of us because none of us had played music with anybody for two months.”

Vancouver Island MusicFest has also set dates on the calendar for the next festival. It will take place July 9 to 11, 2021.



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Comox Valleymusic festivals

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VicPD responding to robbery suspect barricaded in building on Cook Street

Residents are asked to avoid the 2300-block of Cook Street

Beefs & Bouquets, Aug. 12

To submit a beef or a bouquet, email publisher@goldstreamgazette.com

Sooke minor hockey set to get kids on ice by mid-September

President says re-opening dependent on SEAPARC installing ice in time

‘I’ve fallen through the cracks’: Victoria woman calls herself new face of homelessness

Tonya Alton has had to move almost ten times since a ‘wrongful eviction’ in March

Missing python found under vehicle in Victoria

The snake was located more than six kilometres from where it went missing

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

Have you seen Berleen? B.C. pig destined for sanctuary goes missing

Berleen was less than two weeks from travelling to Manitoba when she vanished

Health Canada says several kids hospitalized after eating edible pot products

People warned not to store cannabis products where children can find them

‘It’s not just about me’: McKenna cites need to protect politicians from threats

Police investigation was launched after someone yelled obscenities at a member of McKenna’s staff

Michigan plans dedicated road lanes for autonomous vehicles

First study of its kind in the U.S. to figure out whether existing lanes or shoulders could be used

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Aug. 11

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Filmmaker James Cameron’s Comox Valley winery up for sale

The director behind The Terminator and Titanic puts Beaufort Winery on the market after six years

B.C. announces multi-year plan to double treatment beds for youth with addiction

This will bring the total number of new beds specific to those 12 to 24 years old to 247 province-wide

Most Read