Abbey Gardens announces summer festival lineup
By Vivian Collings
Music @ The Gardens is an upcoming summer festival that is promising to be a feast for the ears with its slate of strong award-winning musicians, including three-time JUNO-award winning Indigenous singer-songwriter Susan Aglukark of Nunavut.
Abbey Gardens board member, Janis Parker, said, “Connecting with nature and the land is central to a lot of the work Susan Aglukark does, so it was a natural fit for her to join us at a celebration of the arts so deeply rooted in nature.”
After a gripping performance at the first Music @ The Gardens event in 2021, Aglukark is returning for a second year and is adding to her list of achivements with the Music Canada 2022 Humanitarian Award for philanthropic pursuits in May. Her performance was made possible through a mutual connection with Scottish-Canadian tenor John McDermott, who will also be performing at the festival.
Hosted by Abbey Gardens, the Music @ The Gardens music festival has dates throughout August and will be held outdoors under their marquee tent as a fundraiser for the development of Abbey Gardens’ biodiversity program.
The biodiversity program’s focus will be to “build relationships within local Indigenous communities and Indigenize programming,” said Ashley McAlister, director of operations and strategic initiatives at Abbey Gardens.
The tent will be set up in Abbey Gardens’ Little Pit; “a restoration site that utilizes native grasses and tall grass prairie methods to re-green a formal gravel pit.”
“It’s amazing to think we have these internationally renowned artists performing in a space that only a few years ago was much more likely to feature dump trucks. That’s really cool,” McAllister said.
Aglukark will perform on Friday, Aug. 12, followed by Dizzy and Fay and John McDermott and Band on Aug. 13, and Nick and Benton and Dala on Aug. 14.
“When attendees experience these incredible performers, they’re surrounded by nature – literally immersed in an active restoration project rehabilitating the gravel pit,” McAllister said.
Nick Russell (of Nick and Benton) is excited to play with both the Nicholas Russell Standards Trio and with Benton Brown during his Aug. 14 matinee.
“It’s always a pleasure to be present at Abbey Gardens,” said Russell, “but especially as a performer at the flourishing Music @ The Gardens Festival.”
The Music @ The Gardens festival is possible this year because of a partnership with the Haliburton County Folk Society. The event schedule and tickets for Music @ The Gardens can be purchased for individual concerts or for the whole weekend at abbeygardens.ca/atthegardens2022.