From international performers to musicians from across Canada, TD’s Sunfest in London, Ont., will be one of the largest this summer.
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In making a grand return for 2023, the annual four-day free festival will take over Victoria Park this July and will feature more than 40 musical acts from around the globe.
According to Alfredo Caxaj, Sunfest executive and co-artistic director, up to 95 per cent of the acts are completely new to the festival.
“In many instances for some of the international groups, their first step will be here in London because they’re headlining many festivals across Canada as well,” he said. “We have groups coming from Armenia, Nigeria, Estonia, South Korea and everywhere in between.”
The 29th Sunfest will also see an array of Canadian artists coming from Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Manitoba.
TD Sunfest returned to live performances last year following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-29 pandemic. While last year’s event still broke records and drew in around 100,000 unique visitors to the Forest CityCaxaj told Global News that this year will be “bigger, better and sunnier than ever.”
“Last year was just a warmup for 2023,” he said. “The music is always nicely complemented by an incredible selection of food, craft (beer) and visual artists that really make the festival a unique attraction.
“There will be five stages, over 200 food and craft exhibitors, two resting areas, and, the most important thing, a beautiful and friendly environment.”
Caxaj stressed that “one of the fundamental principles of the festival, from the very beginning, is to make it accessible to everyone.”
“Unlike many festivals, ours is free…. We truly believe that the festival is for everyone of all ages,” he said, highlighting the number of new and familiar families that come out to Victoria Park every year.
“One of the most beautiful things at the festival is to see all these families from different cultural backgrounds coming to celebrate together over cultural differences… It’s a place where we celebrate life, we celebrate diversity, we celebrate inclusiveness and accessibility,” Caxaj said.
Aside from Sunfest festivities, on June 17, Caxaj will be inducted into the London Music Hall of Fame with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
“I will take this as a beautiful acknowledgement of the work that we’ve been doing for more than 25 years in this community,” he said. “When we started Sunfest, we didn’t see it as a festival. More than a festival, it’s a social project.
“As an organization that has been building race relations, we call Sunfest a global village as it’s perhaps the only weekend in London where will see thousands of people from different cultural backgrounds, races, countries, doesn’t matter. They come to Sunfest to enjoy and celebrate.
“There is nothing more beautiful than seeing that social impact created through the power of music.”
Sunfest is set to take over Victoria Park from July 6 to 9.
Below is a complete list of the TD Sunfest 2023 lineup:
- ADG7 (South Korea)
- AySay (Denmark)
- Bejuco (Colombia)
- Chola and Gypsy (Chile)
- Sara Curruchich (Guatemala)
- DakhaBrakha (Ukraine)
- Valerie Ekoume (Cameroon)
- Enkelé (Colombia)
- Friends (Sweden)
- Disgrace (Poland)
- Javier Alcántara Group (Spain)
- JINJ (Armenia)
- Jupiter & Okwess (Congo – DRC)
- Kalàscima (Italy)
- The Guaracheras (Colombia)
- Mechanics (France)
- Alejandra Robles (Mexico)
- Sangjaru (South Korea)
- The Garifuna Collective (Belize)
- Balaklava Blues, Ontario
- Elage Diouf, Quebec
- Eagle Flight Singers, Ontario
- Five Alarm Funk, B.C.
- Lara Klaus, Québec
- lasso, ontario
- Marta Elena and Her Orchestra, Ontario
- Monk Arabic Jazz, Ontario
- Laura Niquay, Quebec
- Fairouz Oudjida, Quebec
- Rachel Therrien Latin Jazz Project, Quebec
- Rommel, Quebec
- Samba Squad, Ontario
- Jacques Kuba Seguin, Quebec
- Elizabeth Shepherd, Quebec
- Super Duty Tough Work, Manitoba
- The Commotions, Ontario
- The Liquor Store, Quebec
- The Mariachi Ghost, Manitoba
- Veeby, Quebec
- Crazy, Quebec
For more information on the 29th edition of Sunfest, check out the festival’s website.
© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.