California WorldFest is July 12-15 at Nevada County Fairgrounds

SEVEN STAGES OF MUSIC, more than 50 artists from around the world, a full work- shop and educational schedule, daily yoga, family and children’s activities, an artisan marketplace, Global Indigenous People’s Village and onsite camping are all areas to explore at this year’s 22nd annual California WorldFest, presented by The Center for the Arts.

The Gold Country festival transforms California’s “Most Beautiful Fairgrounds” into a world village for more than 6,000 participants per day.

A brand new main stage will be revealed at this year’s event, including an additional video screen, new sound, new lights, and a bigger performance space overall. Video screens have also been raised higher, making for easy viewing no matter where you end up enjoying the show.

WorldFest is presented by regional arts non-profit The Center for the Arts, also based in Grass Valley. Center Executive Director Amber Jo Manuel says: “Music brings us together. We understand each other, our differences, and grow to become a stronger community by opening our hearts to the beat and dancing to the music of the world together each year.”

The WorldFest motto “Music Connects Us All” has been a continuous theme of the event over the years, celebrating music as the connective thread between cultures and traditions new and old, near and far.

This year’s WorldFest lineup exemplifies the theme — featuring artists from Korea, Mali, Israel, India, the United States and more. The lineup runs the gamut: from indie folk band Magic Giant, New Orleans band Galactic, and singer-guitarist-songwriters Trevor Hall and Samantha Fish to Mongolia- Russian throat singers Huun-Huur-Tu, Native American musician Joanne Shenandoah and Korean music band Noreum Machi.

Rolling Stone magazine named Magic Giant “10 Artists You Need to Know”: “A boot-stomping, banjo-toting collective delivering boho-chic pop hooks somewhere between The Avett Brothers and The Chemical Brothers.”

GALACTIC with Erica Falls The seminal New Orleans band has consistently pushed artistic boundaries on the road and in the studio, drawing inspiration from the sounds bubbling up from the city’s streets as much as they do from each other.

Hall’s music, a blend of roots and folk music with hints of inspiration from India, has led him to a series of collaborations with artists such as The Wailers, Michael Franti, and Nahko & Medicine for the People.

After launching her recording career in 2009, Samantha Fish quickly established herself as a rising star in the contemporary blues world.

The Grammy Award-winning artist is one of “America’s most celebrated and critically acclaimed Native American musicians of her time,” wrote the Associated Press.

Sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar is a singular figure in the Indian classical and progressive world music scenes.

For complete lineup of more than 50 artists from around the world, visit

Artists are showcased in traditional festival format on stage, but also in jam sessions and workshops hosted throughout the weekend by various artists, activists, and leaders.

The Global Indigenous People’s Village celebrate indigenous voices, crafts and entertainment to encourage a broader cultural exchange through dance and music. The Nisenan — Nevada County’s indigenous tribe — open the festival.

Families are encouraged to attend with child friendly activities, classes, workshops and more, including a special Teen Scene. The Games On the Green is next to the Music Meadow so parents can keep an eye on their children and see the evening music, too.

Festival attendees can camp onsite at the Nevada County Fair- grounds in tents or RVs with plenty of shade and parking. For the first time this year, WorldFest will have luxury showers avail- able. No matter what age you are, endless adventure awaits you at California WorldFest this July 12-15 in Grass Valley.

Festivals at the Fairgrounds
WorldFest is one of several popular, world-class music festivals held at the Nevada County Fairgrounds each year. This year includes:
Strawberry Music Festival May 24-28
CBA Bluegrass Festival June 14-17
Music in the Mountains SummerFest June 28-July 3
KVMR Celtic Festival, Marketplace & Royal Tournament Sept. 28-30

(Photo: Alan Sheckter)

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