Connecting Lake Simcoe's Community

June 4, 2014 – Orillia, ON

A new dimension has been added to the popular Mariposa Folk Festival this year, thanks to a creative partnership with Lakehead University. A one-of-a-kind day of interactive workshops led by Festival performers will be offered on Friday, July 4, the opening day of the Festival.

The “Mariposa U” day will feature professional musicians from across the folk music spectrum teaching some of the stylistic tricks, techniques and methods of the folk trade in small class settings.

“Folk Festival fans and aspiring musicians will get to learn first-hand from Mariposa Folk Festival performers,” said Mike Hill, Mariposa Folk Festival artistic director.

The Mariposa Folk Festival is legendary for bringing great musicians from across North America and around the world to Orillia for one magical weekend each summer. Regular attendees know the experience of watching a performer on stage and wondering, “How do they do that?”

 “We want to give people a chance to deepen their festival experience. Mariposa U is intended to get that knowledge and skill into the hands of non-professional players,” explained Hill.

A wide range of instruction, from Celtic fiddle to hip-hop, and from swing guitar to harmony singing, is offered, all facilitated by Mariposa performers. Participants will be able to register for up four sessions from a total of 16 different offerings.

A driving force behind the creation of Mariposa U, Lakehead Orillia’s Dean & Vice-Provost Kim Fedderson, is excited about the program’s potential. “Audiences all over the world are seeking ways to break out of being spectators to become creators in their own right. This is an opportunity to really expand the creative experience of the Festival.”

Mariposa U takes place at Lakehead University in downtown Orillia (1 Colborne Street West) from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm on Friday, July 4.  The fee to attend individual 70-minute workshops is $30, while the cost for the full day, including four workshops and lunch, is $100. Lunch is provided for those who register for two or more sessions. Class sizes are limited, so book early.

To see a full list of the class offerings, schedules, performer/facilitator bios and to register go to and follow the links for Mariposa U @ Lakehead. Information is also available through the Mariposa Folk Festival office at 705-326-3655.

Story and photo courtesy of Lakehead University.


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