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Our guide, including times, to the 2023 Cambridge Folk Festival





This year’s Cambridge Folk Festival – one of the biggest dates in the Cambridge music calendar – starts tomorrow (Thursday, July 27) and runs until Sunday (July 30).

Rufus Wainwright. Picture: Tony Hauser
Rufus Wainwright. Picture: Tony Hauser

Among the famous names due to take the stage at Cherry Hinton Hall are Scottish legends The Proclaimers (Friday), acclaimed singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright (Saturday), four-time Grammy Award winner Angélique Kidjo, and iconic American folk/country artist Judy Collins (both Sunday).

During the festival, expect to hear everything from traditional British and Irish folk music to rap, from Americana and country to bluegrass, World Music and dub. New for 2023 is Stage 3, previously known as the Club Tent.

Stage 3 will be launched on the Thursday with a stream of breakthrough talent: traditional English folk from the George Buchanan Trio, old-time bluegrass from The Vanguards, Nigel Wearne’s guitar-based twist on blues/folk, or the deeply compelling songs of indie folk artist, Jesca Hoop.

Nigel Wearne. Picture: Ian Laidlaw
Nigel Wearne. Picture: Ian Laidlaw

[Read more: Colombian collective Cimarrón to bring colour to this year’s Cambridge Folk Festival, Nigel Wearne: Cambridge Folk Festival performer’s music explores Americana’s ‘darker side’, Musician Doug Levitt: Finding inspiration from travelling on the Greyhound bus]

Also, famed emerging artist stage The Den gets under way a day earlier than usual, meaning visitors can enjoy the acts from Thursday.

There is also a children’s area, the Duck Pond, and plenty of music and activities to enjoy on Coldham’s Common – one of the areas where festival-goers camp.

The festival is organised by Cambridge City Council and is sponsored this year by Cambridge Water Company, Otter Ales and Cranes Cider.

James Page, marketing and communications manager for the council, said: “This year’s Cambridge Folk Festival promises to be as brilliant as ever.

“The team is looking forward to welcoming everyone to the beautiful grounds of Cherry Hinton Hall, for four days of incredible music and festival magic.

“Renowned the world over, Cambridge holds a very special and unique place with attenders and performers alike.

“Spanning decades, the festival has retained its uniquely intimate atmosphere, continuing to push the boundaries musically, champion new emerging talent and also remember its legacy of tradition.”

Flyte. Picture: Katie Silvester
Flyte. Picture: Katie Silvester

Here are the times for this year’s four-day musical extravaganza across the four main stages (times may be subject to change):

Thursday

Stage 2

Gnoss – 17:00-18:00

Flyte – 18:20-19:20

Symbio – 19:40-20:40

Ibibio Sound Machine – 21:00-22:00

Stage 3

Frog on a Bike – 15:30-16:30

Georgie Buchanan Trio – 17:30-18:20

The Vanguards – 18:40-19:30

Nigel Wearne – 19:50-20:40

Jesca Hoop – 21:00-22:00

The Den

Elsi – 17:10-17:55

Sam Wilkinson – 18:10-18:55

Sebastian Schub – 19:10-19:55

Niall McNamee – 20:10-20:55

me + deboe – 21:15-22:15

Friday

Stage 1

Blue Rose Code – 13:30-14:20

The Sharon Shannon Trio – 14:50-15:40

James Yorkston and Nina Persson – 16:10-17:10

Eliza Carthy + The Restitution – 17:40-18:40

Lady Blackbird – 19:10-20:10

Arrested Development – 20:40-21:40

The Proclaimers – 22:10-23:25

Stage 2

Angie Mack Hula Hoop Show – 11:00-11:30

3 Sticks Family Ceilidh with caller Mary Panton – 12:00-13:00

Symbio – 13:20-14:10

Jinda Biant – 14:25-15:15

Folk Camps Party Band with caller Fee Lock – 15:35-17:05

The Longest Johns – 17:25-18:15

The Ayoub Sisters – 18:30-19:30

Siobhan Miller Band – 19:50-20:40

Daoirl Farrell Trio – 21:00-22:00

Stornoway – 22:25-23:25

Stage 3

Guitar Styles Workshop with Nigel Wearne – 10:00-11:30

EFEx Artist Mentor Programme featuring Heather Ferrier, Maddie Morris, George Boomsma and Hannah Scott – 12:00-15:35

Songlines Interview – Le Vent du Nord – 15:50-16:50

Showcase Scotland Expo Showcase featuring Amy Laurenson, Beth Malcolm, Chloe Matharu and Michael McGovern – 17:00-20:25

Blood Harmony – 20:30-21:20

Brian McNeill – 21:30-22:15

Open Stage (sign-ups) – 22:30-23:30

The Den

Festival Choir with Ben and Dom – 10:00-11:30

Open Stage Slots – 12:00-13:15

Abhainn – 13:30-14:15

Mari Mathias – 14:30-15:15

ghostgirl – 15:30-16:15

Milly Upton – 16:30-17:15

Etaoin – 17:30-18:15

Before Breakfast – 18:30-19:15

MT Jones – 19:30-20:15

Good Habits – 20:30-21:15

Ellie Gowers – 21:35-22:20

Eddy Smith + The 507 – 22:40-23:25

Doug Levitt. Picture: Patrick Fraser
Doug Levitt. Picture: Patrick Fraser

Saturday

Stage 1

Angeline Morrison + the Sorrow Songs Band – 13:05-14:05

Le Vent du Nord – 14:35-15:35

Grace Petrie – 16:05-17:05

Gangstagrass – 17:35-18:35

Kate Rusby – 19:05-20:20

Rufus Wainwright – 20:50-22:05

Niteworks – 22:25-23:25

Stage 2

Festival Session with Brian McNeill – 12:35-15:05

Ferris + Sylvester – 15:25-16:15

Julian Taylor Band – 16:35-17:25

Breabach – 17:45-18:35

Clare Sands – 18:55-19:45

St Lundi – 20:05-20:55

Baskery – 21:20-22:10

The Chair – 22:35-23:25

UFT’s Silent Ceilidh with caller Cate Haynes – 00:00-01:45

Stage 3

Workshop – Fiddlin’ Around with Mikey Kenney – 10:00-11:30

Wales Arts International Showcase featuring Cerys Hafana, Gwilym Bowen Rhys, Lleuwen and Pedair – 12:00-15:25

Open Stage (sign-ups) – 15:35-16:40

Feis Rois – 16:55-17:40

New Routes Folk Club featuring Emily Fraser, Max Bianco featuring Sean O'Hanrahan, Simeon Hammond Dallas, Honey + The Bear, The Smith + Brewer Band – 17:55-21:25

Doug Levitt – 21:45-22:30

Núria Graham – 22:45-23:35

The Den

Festival Choir with Ben and Dom – 10:30-11:30

Open Stage – 12:00-13:00

Emily Simmons – 13:20-14:05

Marie White – 14:20-15:05

Anna Ling – 15:20-16:05

Elkyn – 16:20-17:05

Amy Papiransky – 17:20-18:05

Owen Spafford + Louis Campbell – 18:20-19:05

Naala – 19:20-20:05

Broadside Hacks – 20:20-22:05

Imlac – 22:25-23:25

Judy Collins. Picture: Shervin Lainez
Judy Collins. Picture: Shervin Lainez

Sunday

Stage 1

William Prince – 12:00-13:00

Oi Va Voi – 13:20-14:20

Judy Collins presents Wildflowers (US Folk Legend slot) – 14:45-15:45

Fisherman's Friends (UK Folk Legend slot) – 16:00-17:00

Kiefer Sutherland – 17:25-18:25

Elephant Sessions – 18:45-19:45

Angélique Kidjo – 20:15-21:30

Imelda May – 22:00-23:00

Stage 2

Kids Show – Nick Cope – 12:05-13:05

Angeline Morrison + the Sorrow Songs Band – 13:25-14:10

Maya Delilah – 14:30-15:20

The Chair – 15:40-16:30

Akram Abdulfattah – 16:50-17:40

Hollie Cook – 18:00-18:50

Catrin Finch and Cimarrón – 19:15-20:15

Le Vent du Nord – 20:40-21:30

Gentleman's Dub Club – 21:50-22:50

Stage 3

Workshop – No Time for Genre with Gangstagrass – 10:00-11:30

Culture Ireland Showcase featuring Armagh Rhymers, Grainne Hunt, The Henry Girls and Slomha – 12:00-15:25

Open Stage (sign-ups) – 15:30-16:45

Mikey Kenny – 17:00-17:45

Festival Choir with Ben and Dom – 18:00-18:30

Sons of Town Hall – 18:40-19:25

Hub Band Project – 19:40-20:00

Faith | Branko – 20:15-21:00

Granny's Attic – 21:15-22:00

Pavey Ark – 22:15-23:10

The Den

Festival Choir with Ben and Dom – 10:30-11:30

Open Stage – 12:00-13:00

The 29th Funktion – 13:20-14:05

Jenny Colquitt – 14:25-15:10

Isabella Coulstock – 15:30-16:15

Hector Shaw – 16:35-17:20

Frankie Archer – 17:40-18:25

Rob Green – 18:45-19:30

Chris Cleverley – 19:50-20:35

Dominie Hooper – 20:55-21:40

Rossa Murray – 22:00-23:00

Cimarrón. Picture: Ruven Afanador
Cimarrón. Picture: Ruven Afanador

For more information, visit cambridgelive.org.uk/folk-festival.



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