By Dave Flaherty/The Oshawa Express
A brand new music festival set for Oshawa later this month has a heavy focus on diversity.
The Crossing Point Festival will run in downtown’s Brick by Brick Park on Friday, July 27 and Saturday, July 28.
Derek Giberson, president of the event’s board of directors, says he’s been cognizant that the city and region are somewhat lacking in the area of music festivals.
“People are excited about a music festival in Oshawa. Currently, we don’t have one that showcases the diversity in Canadian music,” he says.
Noting that Canada has “the quality of being a place where a lot of musical traditions cross paths”, Giberson says promoting that diversity was a significant factor in developing Crossing Point.
The multifarious nature of Canada’s music landscape can be seen in the line-up of musicians set to perform over the weekend, spanning genres from folk rock to hip-hop, and most everything in between.
The headliners for the show are roots rock band The Skydiggers, and former Sudanese child soldier turned hip-hop artist/peace ambassador Emmanuel Jal.
Also featured are rising Oshawa rockers Crown Lands, four-time Juno-nominated reggae singer Ammoye, 70s-cinematic flavoured Jxck Kxlly, and Whitby singer-songwriter Sarah Fazackerley.
Giberson says he’s had the general concept of the festival in the back of his mind for a while now.
“The seed of the idea and some of the collection of components, and putting ideas into a framework, I would say for me it is something that started several years ago,” he says.
He reached out to others who have their finger on the pulse of the local arts and culture scene.
Giberson calls the chosen location a perfect setting.
“We chose Brick by Brick for two main reasons. We wanted it to be in the heart of the city, and we wanted room to grow in the space. It is a really underutilized area. People almost forget it is there until you mention it.”
With this being a brand new event, Giberson says it is somewhat tricky to speculate on the festival’s initial performance.
“We expect several hundred people,” he says. “Everything is a pilot project here in year one. We’ll get together after, and talk about what worked, and also what we can grow.”
Tickets are $28.25 for Friday night, $48.03 for Saturday and a weekend pass is $67.80 and can be purchased at ticketscene.ca
For more information on the festival, including volunteer opportunities, visit crossingpointfestival.ca.