Folk Festival Names New Director of Music Programming

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Audiences will be thanking a new person for the incredible talent at Birds Hill Park this July. The Winnipeg Folk Festival announced its new Director of Music Programming on October 18, putting to rest months of speculation after the departure of Artistic Director Rick Fenton last summer. Chris Frayer will be the fifth Director of Music Programming of the 31-year-old festival, the first to be born in Winnipeg.

For many observers and industry insiders, Frayer was the natural choice to helm the artistic side of the venerable music festival. Frayer is a mainstay on the Manitoba folk scene, with his involvement in the World Next Door Festival and as former Artistic Director of the West End Cultural Centre. Frayer, who will leave his current position as Artist Director of the Jazz Winnipeg Festival, will be responsible for developing the music program for the annual music festival as well as working with the organization on new projects and programs.

The Festival's Executive Director, Trudy Schroeder, said in a recent press release that she is "pleased that this position will be held by an individual who has developed a strong reputation within the community." Schroeder continued by saying that those at the Festival "are convinced that Chris will bring a distinctive and exciting approach to the Festival program and to the planning and implementation process for new ventures and programs we are currently developing"

"I am extremely excited about joining this well-established, and well-respected arts organization," Frayer said in the Festival's release. "The Winnipeg Folk Festival is known on an international scale for its high standards, and commitment to producing a world class event. I look forward to meeting and working with all who help make this festival a reality. I also look forward to making my contribution to the strategic initiatives."

Frayer will start at his new position in early November to begin planning the upcoming Festival, which runs July 7-10, 2005 at Birds Hill Park.

For more information on the Winnipeg Folk Festival, please visit

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