Printable brochure of 2019 lineup IRF19 Brochure
Digital copy of our 2019 Season IRF19 Program Final
Join three-time Juno nominee and modern-day Renaissance woman, Sarah Slean and the popular ECMA-nominated Island ensemble, the Atlantic String Machine, for an incredible night of music!
Single tickets will go on sale to the public April 3rd.
“THE GREAT ESCAPE” is ECMA award-winning Meaghan Blanchard’s fourth album. The songs are strong, at times deeply personal, and sown throughout are the narratives of men and women who have rumbled with profound universal themes: self-doubt, fear and hope for a better way of living.
She has toured extensively across Canada and the UK, and has even showcased her music stateside at the Folk Alliance International conference in Kansas City, MO. She has performed for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and played 47 shows in 15 days at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.
Since relocating in 2013, Ontario native Nick Doneff has become a staple within the PEI music community as a busy sideman for island favourites such as Nudie and Liam Corcoran. In 2017, Music PEI presented him with the “Musician of the Year” award for his stage and studio work. Doneff is now emerging as an original act known for his earnest songwriting and magnetic live performances. His debut record has been met with glowing reviews and international airplay. The song Old Dog was featured on CBC’s flagship arts and culture program, Q, where host Tom Power described him as a cross between John Prine and Joel Plaskett.
Nick Doneff is a talented musician, multi-instrumentalist and multiple Music PEI award nominee with a self-titled album.
Join Nick and ECMA award winning Island singer / songwriter and multi Music PEI award wins, Meaghan Blanchard, for an evening of song, stories and her exclusive pre-release concert for her album “The Great Escape”.
The prolific Vancouver Island-based singer / songwriter / pianist / producer has earned a loyal international following as a triple threat. He’s a piano virtuoso with a technical mastery of many different styles, an eloquent singer/songwriter, and a charming and engaging performer.
No Filter is the eleventh album from MICHAEL KAESHAMMER. This is the sound of an artist following his muse completely unhindered by thoughts of commercial imperatives or genre constraints. On No Filter, Michael mixes his well-crafted and melodic original songs with a couple of evocative piano instrumentals, and the result is a delightfully varied collection that showcases Michael’s smooth and soulful voice. It also showcases Kaeshammer’s impressive evolution as a perceptive and poetic lyricist.
His first album was actually a solo piano record, and Michael has never lost contact with those roots. Last year he released another record of solo piano instrumentals, The Pianist, in under the radar fashion. “That album wasn’t planned as anything other than my recording some songs for my parents”, Michael recalls. “It’s as if you’re just sitting on your couch at home listening to me play.”‘
Recently nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award, Kaeshammer has won previous WCMAs as Musician of the Year and Entertainer of the Year, while seven Juno Award nominations have netted him two wins. With his recording career now spanning two full decades and 12 albums later, Michael Kaeshammer has emerged as a truly original artist at the very top of his game and one in love with the creative process.
“Right now I love playing and making music more than ever”, he stresses. “It has got to a point where it is a really important part of my life rather than being my life and I love it so much now”.
Dennis Ellsworth and Kinley Dowling are an Island duo who have been friends and musical collaborators for years. They will share music from their recent debut album, which has received multiple Music PEI award nominations.
Presented in partnership with Music PEI and the PEI Potato Growers
Isabel Bayrakdarian, an Indian River Festival favourite and internationally acclaimed soprano, is joined by virtuoso violinist, Marc Djokic, a recent Prix Goyer winner, and our Artistic Director, pianist Robert Kortgaard, for sparkling gypsy tunes, zarzuela and swaying rhythms of steamy Espana.
The Sweet Lowdown (Miriam Sonstenes, fiddle; Amanda Blied, guitar; Tad Ruszel, mandolin) offer original acoustic roots music. You’ll hear influences as far-ranging as Celtic jigs, Appalachian fiddling and contemporary pop. Drawing from these influences, yet not beholden, they blaze a new trail with original songwriting and innovative instrumental arrangements.
Join Music PEI’s 2018 Songwriter of the year, Alicia Toner, with a blend of roots, country, rock and Americana and Justin Nozuka, award winning Canadian folk, soul, rock singer/songwriter with millions of YouTube views, for an afternoon of fantastic songs and stories.
The Ennis Sisters have weathered a lifetime of phases and a series of musical explorations together. Come join them as they return to their roots, singing contemporary folk songs with a traditional Irish Newfoundland twist.
Their debut album, “In The Battle Years”, garnered Hillburn an East Coast Music Award last year. With soaring harmonies and densely-layered arrangements, this folk-rooted band’s sound is unique. Having just released their 2nd album, “The Wilder Beyond”, the band has promised a special IRF premiere performance!
Lennie Gallant is a native of Rustico, Prince Edward Island. This renowned Canadian singer-songwriter has recorded eleven albums (nine in English and two in French), which have won him a host of awards and nominations from the JUNOs, East Coast Music Awards, and Les Prix Eloizes. He was recently honored with the Canadian Folk Music Award for Artist of the Year. He is the 2017 East Coast Music Awards Entertainer of the Year and also won the 2017 ECMA Folk Recording of the Year for his live album, “Searching For Abegweit”. Lennie just finished his fourth summer theatre season in PEI and followed that with an East Coast tour of his multimedia hit musical, “Searching For Abegweit -The Island Songs & Stories of Lennie Gallant”. The immensely popular production ran for over 140 shows. His newest release is a double cd album of 22 songs from that production. Many of the show’s visual images appear in his book, Peter’s Dream, a collaboration with sibling visual artist Karen Gallant that showcases 52 of her unique paintings paired up with his songs.
His album, “When We Get There” was nominated for a Juno Award and went up to the International Space Station with Canadian astronaut Julie Payette. Over 30 artists have recorded his songs, including Measha Bruggergosman, Ode de L’Acadie, and Jimmy Buffet and his songs have appeared in feature films, television series, and numerous theatrical productions. A recipient of the Order of Canada, Lennie is an international touring artist who has represented Canada on songwriter events in Nashville, London and Texas, entertained our troops in Kandahar, performed at Canada Day events in Washington and London, and on the world stage at the Vancouver Winter Olympics.
Lennie Gallant will be releasing his highly anticipated new album called TIME TRAVEL at the Indian River Festival. This is Gallant’s first studio recording in nine years and early response from industry insiders all agree, it is his “finest recording to date”.
“I am so excited about this album! ” says Gallant “It seems the stars are aligned for these songs to come out right now in so many ways.”
Gallant worked with well-known Island born and raised producer Daniel Ledwell on this project and in addition to his band members, Patricia Richard, Jeremy Gallant, and Sean Kemp, there are some special guest appearances by well-known artists such as; Rose Cousins, Jenn Grant, The Atlantic String Machine, The Fretless, Chris Corrigan and Mary Jane Lamond.
“Dan (Ledwell) and I were marvelling at all the strange coincidences that were happening in regards to the particular songs of mine that we selected for the record.” Lennie says “I really believe this is the best album I’ve ever made in so many ways and having so many wonderful guests lend their talents to it, has made the process rather magical and special.”
Gallant is fresh off the heels of a 140 date run of his hit musical Searching For Abegweit, and while the concert will be a celebration of the new works there is no doubt that he will also be performing hits from that show as well as other well-known songs.