Did you know that this little festival is also one of the only remaining free music festivals in the country? And the other one is the Regina Folk Festival? That’s two Saskatchewan communities standing out from the crowd in the overall promotion of live music.
That is something that Charles Dickens would have approved of. Did you know that Charles Dickens actually wrote the libretto (words and story) for an operetta in 1836 – it was titled “The Village Coquettes. He also wrote several songs which were popular in his day ( “The Ivy Green” was one of those), was an avid supporter of opera and classical music and his sister Fanny was an accomplished pianist and singer?
In the infamous “Christmas Carol” Mr. Fezzywig is the character who is kind, generous and hosts an incredibly fun party where laughter, music, dance and conversation with friends is highlighted as the worthwhile part of a life worth living.
Perpetuating the spirit of Dickens in more ways than one, the committee has created their own Fezzywig’s pub, offering a full out free music festival as part of the Dickens weekend. Hosted in conjunction with Cornerstone Theatre, the Hall board, and the committee, this is the place to rest your weary bones all weekend, enjoy a conversation, watch the kids relax in the children’s zone and warm your spirit.
Michele Amy, who also co-ordinates the Kenosee Lake Kitchen Party, is hosting the mainstage, and Paul Twietmeyer is providing sound. All local musicians and performers have been booked with a focus on creating variety. Some familiar faces and many new entertainers are being celebrated this year, in an attempt to ensure that a wide variety of talented people are featured on our stages.
So what are the musical highlights?
Friday, Dec. 6:
11:45 – 12:45 Carragana Ramblers: Classic Country
3:00 – 4:30 : Happy Wanderers old tyme dance
4:30 – 5:00: Roy Rutagines – pop karaoke
5:00 – 6:00: Michele Amy, Donna Turk, Laurie Fornwald: an Old Time Kitchen Party
6:30 – 7:30: Teagan Littlechief and Morgan Turk
Saturday: Dec 7
8 – 10: Breakfast with Santa
10 – 11: Cratchitt Kids production of “Christmas Carol Report”
11:30 – 12:30: Focal Point: youth performing troupe
12:30 – 1:00 Family carol singalong with Jacquie Walbaum
1;00 -2:00 Danny Kazam: magician and children’s entertainer
2:00 – 3:00: Hints of Harmony – adult chorus from Wawota
3:15 – 4:15: Anthony Kelly (family Christmas) country Gospel Hour
4:30 – 5:00: Donna and Morgan Turk: Christmas Jazz
5:00 – 6:00: Liam Easton – modern country
6:30 – 7:30: Dale Mac: Roots and Blues recording artist
Sharon Elliott, a talented harpist from Weyburn will be providing beautiful ambiance all weekend for the United Church High tea, and buskers will be performing around the town in many stores and locations. Ken King, at King’s Department Store, has also hired local musicians to play in his store for the full festival, and we’re always grateful for his support of the local music scene. Pop in and check out who’s playing, and get your Christmas shopping done at the same time.
Don’t forget about the pictures with Santa at the Victorian Market (elementary school gym) on Saturday, the lighted parade each evening and the wonderful horse and carriage rides offered to one and all.
Pop down to Fezzywig’s (the Carlyle Memorial Hall) for your full festival program, and plan to join the festivities in this family-friendly festival. Fezzywig’s is “command central” for the festival, is a licenced facility from 3pm – 1am, where children are welcome and the popcorn is flowing and wonderful food will be served after the street vendors are closed up.