Latest News

Festival Program Changes September 20, 2016 - Festival participants, please note these changes to venues, dates, and times.  We apologize for any inconvenience these changes may cause, and hope you can still make all the events on […]
Festival Office Opens ~ La Veta School of the Arts, 105 West Ryus Avenue September 20, 2016 - Our board members and the many volunteers who support the Celtic Music Festival are hard at work putting finishing touches on the world-class events that comprise this year’s gathering.  We […]
Parking Options for the Friday and Saturday Concerts September 19, 2016 - You have both street and parking lot options for parking on Friday and Saturday evenings.  You are welcome to park on the streets adjacent to Washington School (201 East Fifth […]

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2016 Featured Performers

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Altan

Performing Thursday & Friday

No Irish traditional band in the last dozen years has had a wider impact on audiences and music lovers throughout the world than Altan.

With their exquisitely produced award-winning recordings, ranging dynamically from the most sensitive and touching old Irish songs all the way to hard hitting reels and jigs, and with their heartwarming, dynamic live performances, Altan have moved audiences from Donegal to Tokyo to Seattle. Throughout, there has been the unwavering commitment of the band to bringing the beauty of traditional music, particularly that of the Donegal fiddlers and singers, to contemporary audiences in a way that brings out all its qualities and destroys none. In fact, Altan have always believed that Irish traditional music is a modern music in every sense and its growing influence and popularity have proved them right.

The High Kings

To say that The High Kings are charting a new course for Irish ballad music – equal parts rousing and reflective, energetic and insightful – is an understatement. They are, essentially, marking out a new and bright era for Irish folk music, and aiming to bring a broad demographic along for the journey.

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The Outside Track

A stunning synthesis of virtuosity and energy, The Outside Track’s marriage of Canadian, Scottish and Irish music and song has been rapturously received around the world.  Hailing from Scotland, Ireland, Cape Breton and Vancouver, its five members are united by a love of traditional music and a commitment to creating new music on its foundation.

MAIRE NI CHATHASAIGH & CHRIS NEWMAN

Chris Newman and Maire Ni Chathasaigh

The virtuoso partnership of England’s premier flatpicking guitarist and “the greatest Celtic harper of our age” (LIVE IRELAND) has by now brought its unique musical vision to twenty-two countries on five continents. Chris and Máire have performed at over 175 folk, Celtic, arts, harp and guitar festivals in Europe, the USA and Australasia and have given almost two thousand concerts in venues large and small – from the tiniest of historic churches in England, Germany and Italy to palaces in Kyoto and Istanbul, London’s Barbican, Sydney’s Town Hall and the Philharmonie in Cologne. Together they have created one of the most distinctive voices in modern acoustic music. Their six duo and five solo CDs, instructional books and collaborations with many other luminaries of the Celtic, folk, swing jazz and bluegrass worlds express both the depth of their commitment to tradition and an eternally playful, curious and adventurous spirit.

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Defining the Festival

The Spanish Peaks Celtic Festival is designed as an intimate four-day gathering led by renowned guest artists, teachers, and scholars from Celtic countries abroad, Canada, and the United States.  The Festival offers over 60 different events, including major concerts; two singing programs; instrumental workshops and master classes; a series of demonstration talks and performances on aspects of Celtic music, history, and folklore; a Celtic Harp Retreat; a newly established Piping Retreat; and sprinkled throughout are ceilidhs/ceilis and playing sessions where anyone can freely join in or enjoy as an audience.  Finally, the friendly ambiance and spontaneous interplay between artists and participants spark the exciting sharing of music, ideas, and knowledge, all reflected gifts from the fullness of a rich Celtic experience.

We thank you for coming and sharing this experience with us.

The Festival Board

We invite you to embrace music that reflects the rousing spirit of Celts past and present, whose songs haunt us with their pure beauty or make us laugh with their bold humor, and whose tunes, be they deeply rooted or newly composed, are as delicate as the lilt of a flute on the air or as explosive and exciting as the jigs and reels that fly from a fiddler’s bow, lifting your feet right off the ground –music as compelling today as it was a hundred years ago.