The 2021 Spanish Peaks International Celtic Music Festival Canceled

Huerfano County, Colorado

To all who love and support this unique event,

Over the last several months, the Board of  Directors of the Spanish Peaks International Celtic Music Festival, with growing hope and building anticipation, have been putting the final touches on what promised to be a fantastic event for 2021.  During the last few weeks, however, it has become apparent that we cannot reconcile the desire to offer a positive, quality festival experience with the realities of managing the health and safety of all of our participants, volunteers, and artists. It is now with deep sadness and regret that we have concluded that there is no pathway forward that can meet the needs of all of our participants while COVID remains an uncertain reality and we must, therefore, cancel this year’s festival.

This was not a decision that was easily reached, and we know that it will be a great disappointment to all of you who have been part of what has made this such a unique event since 2005.  We know that this event is personal to many of you, and because so, you have contributed much of what has made this festival thrive.

Even as we are still reeling from the cancellation of this year’s festival, we are beginning to cast our vision forward to September 2022.  We remain volunteer driven and sustained through the generosity of many.  The names of those who make this happen change over time, and thus, we hereby extend an invitation to be part of 2022 to any who would like to be part of our future, whether it be in a leadership role, through financial support, or as “boots on the ground” during festival time.

Finally, if you have already registered for 2021 through mail, your payment will be promptly refunded.  Please feel free to contact the Festival through the “Contact” option below (on this page).

We also invite you to follow us and “like” us on Facebook, and to subscribe (also below) to receive new updates, items of interest to the Celtic world, and ways that you might be able to support us and our artists throughout the coming months.

As always, we thank you for your continued support.

Sam Sortore – Festival Board President

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2021 Featured Performers & Tutors
(Click on photos for more content)

In the days to come the Spanish Peaks International Celtic Music Festival will be “spotlighting” many of the performers that you can look forward to seeing in 2021.

John Doyle

“Few rhythm guitarists demand the spotlight, but Doyle’s superpowered accompaniment in trad-music settings is a marvel.  Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers Acoustic Guitar Magazine

“A complete rhythm section all on his own.” Chicago Tribune

“”More talent than anybody deserves to have all to themselves.” Philadelphia News




Kevin Burke

“Burke imparts a rhythmic intensity that is remarkably powerful…a superior instrumentalist in any idiom…impressively virtuosic.” – The New York Times

“A lyrical player of emotional electricity.” – The Washington Post



From Lunasa, Kevin Crawford, Colin Farrell, and Cillian Vallely join us again in 2021.


Patsy O’Brien

“Falls in the void between Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, and Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson. An Irish Robbie Robertson.” (New Haven Advocate)


And, if you’d like to play a role in the Festival…

One of the most striking and enduring qualities of this festival is the sense of ownership that all of you feel about it.  Spanish Peaks belongs to the musicians and to you, our participants. I will always recall what one musician (who hadn’t been able to perform “across the pond” for a while) told me at a late-night session: “This is my Ireland.”  Our collective ownership is one reason why it feels so important to be able to “go live” this year.

Our artists have always recognized that holding an event of this stature, in a Colorado county numbering fewer than 7,000 residents, requires give and take from everyone.  This year is no different.  However, there is an additional challenge for the Festival this year.  We want to meet the bar set in previous years by bringing in the caliber of musicians you have come to expect.  With only your donations in 2020, and the uncertainties from the pandemic, we are putting ourselves on the line.

With that in mind, we are again offering you the opportunity to sponsor one of our artists, or even a concert.  With sponsorship comes an even greater sense of ownership, various perks, and an personal opportunity (if you so choose) to meet the artist you have sponsored.

Below are links to sponsor, as well as other ways to contribute.

1) Check out our Sponsorship page for unique opportunities to participate.  In the next couple of days this page will be updated to better reflect our plans for 2021 in particular.
2) If sponsorship is beyond your means to do, go to our Donations page to learn about other ways of helping us.
3) And lastly, if you’d like to make a financial donation to the Festival, click on the green button below to go directly to a payment option.