JunoFest Gets Ready to Take Over

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With a little over two months of waiting left, planning is well underway for one of the biggest music events in Winnipeg's history. JunoFest, the two-night festival that will surround the 2005 JUNO Awards taking place in Winnipeg, is getting ready to take over the city and show the rest of the country exactly why this prairie city won its bid to host Canada's biggest awards show.

JunoFest runs April 1 and 2, 2005 in some of the premier clubs and venues in Winnipeg. With about 100 bands in 14 venues, audiences will be treated to two incredible nights of music. JunoFest producer Rick Fenton's goal is to feature 50% local acts with the remaining 50% made up primarily of 2005 JUNO nominees and a handful of prominent Canadian artists. Nightly line-ups will feature three or four acts per stage with developing and established acts sharing the limelight, which Fenton thinks will be great for fans. Wristbands for the festival will be available for $25, allowing music fans access to any of the concerts - from the biggest venues to the littlest clubs - for one price.

"Iím more excited about the rest of Canada seeing us than us seeing the rest of Canada," Fenton says of the upcoming festivities. "I think itís a wonderful opportunity for a great music scene to really shine on a national level."

Fenton, the former artistic director of the Winnipeg Folk Festival, is a respected record producer and partner in Ya Yo Productions, which produces music DVDs, television broadcasts, albums, and more. Fenton was named as JunoFest producer in late November.

The nationally-televised 34th annual JUNO Awards will be held at the brand new MTS Centre on April 3, 2005. The weekend will feature a number of events, including JunoFest, Juno Fan Fare, Songwriter's Circle, and the Juno Cup celebrity hockey game. Tickets will go on sale February 12 through Ticketmaster.

For more information or to get involved as a volunteer, please visit www.winnipegjunos2005.com.

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