By Ann McCreary
Traditional music from Colombia and Ireland, as well as home-grown music performed by native sons, is on tap at Pearrygin Lake State Park’s Celebrating Cultures Festival on Sunday (Sept. 15).
The free musical celebration of Washington’s diverse culture will be presented on the shores of Pearrygin Lake from 1-5 p.m.
“This is going to be a fun program,” said Jill Linzee of Northwest Heritage Resources, which is a partner in the festival.
Kicking off the festival will be Diego Coy Música Colombiana, from 1-2 p.m. Coy, a Seattle-area resident, will lead a band on traditional Colombian instruments.
Originally from Santiago de Cali, Colombia, Coy has performed in a variety of musical groups and taught Colombian folk music. He has traveled extensively throughout South America to learn musical traditions and wind instruments and percussion of native Andean cultures. During his travels he mastered the quena and the zampoña, and learned to make his own instruments by hand.
Coy has performed throughout the world, including Japan, France, the Czech Republic, Italy and cities across the United States.
Since coming to Seattle in 2003, Coy has appeared at the Seattle Folklife Festival, Washington Flute Circle, University of Washington World Series, Seattle Symphony Educational Program, Seattle Rhythm Festival, Seattle Fiestas Patrias, Seattle Seafair, and more.
Presenting traditional Irish music with a contemporary twist, An Dochas takes the stage at 2:15 p.m. Led by Mellad Abaid, who lives in Spokane, An Dochas means “The Hope” in Gaelic.
Described as “energetic and fun,” An Dochas includes band members with diverse cultural and musical backgrounds, playing authentic instruments – Uileann pipes, bodhran, fiddle, mandolin and guitar. Vocals are layered with familiar and original melodies.
The band blends new and old, incorporating contemporary sounds into a diverse repertoire that is both dynamic and poignant.
Closing the show at 3:30 p.m. is Luc and the Lovingtons, led by the Methow Valley’s own Luc Reynaud.
Though technically not from another culture, Linzee said the band’s emphasis on world music fits the cultural celebration theme of the music festival.
Luc and the Lovingtons describe themselves as a world-soul-reggae band, known for raucous live shows and an authentic, powerful message.
Their rich vocal harmonies embedded in roots reggae, Afro pop, Motown and soul, Luc and the Lovingtons cultivate a feel-good performance.
Along with Luc Reynaud, the band includes Methow native Loren Boley, Jesse “Slim” Cross, a Chicago bass player, and Daniel Miller, a Seattle reggae guitarist.
Luc and the Lovingtons played at the festival last year, and Reynaud said he was looking forward to returning. “We love that show. It’s a beautiful spot. Playing at Pearrygin is playing at a place where I used to be a little kid,” he said.
The Pearrygin Lake festival is part of a series of events celebrating Washington’s diverse cultures. The program is a partnership between the Washington Parks and Recreation Commission, the Washington State Arts Commission and Northwest Heritage Resources. Funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Washington State Parks Commission.
Refreshments provided by Room One will be available during the festival. Visitors enter the event through he east campground of the state park. The festival is accessible to people with disabilities. The Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to the event.
For a full schedule of Folk and Traditional Arts in the Parks Program events, visit www.parks.wa.gov/events.