Multiple World of Bluegrass applications open for 2023

The International Bluegrass Music Association has opened the application process for participation in two big parts of their annual World of Bluegrass convention, held September 26-30 in Raleigh, NC.

The Kids on Bluegrass program is an opportunity for young pickers and singers up to 17 years of age to rehearse and perform together during the week. Those chosen will have the chance to play two sets of music during the weekend Streetfest, and must also be able to make several rehearsal sessions during the week. Select participants will also be chosen to perform during the pre-event reception before the IBMA Bluegrass Music Awards show.

Rehearsals will be led by experienced performer/instructors, and the players will be mentored in producing, performing, promoting, and even emceeing a professional bluegrass music show, along with working with other musicians in a band setting.

Information and an application form can be found online. Applications must be received by April 30. There is no cost to participate, but applicants will need to cover their own room and board during the week.

Applications are also open for weekend Streetfest perfomers. Artists and bands are needed for the multiple outdoor stages set up along Fayetteville Street in downtown Raleigh, weather permitting. When nature cooperates, more than 100,000 people come downtown for this fun event, free to the public, with a variety of food and craft vendors also set up along the street, which is closed to vehicular traffic. In the event of poor weather, all musical stages are moved indoors.

Acts selected for the Street Stages can play up to two sets, and will receive the following:

  • A small monetary stipend
  • Fixed fees based on set length
  • Discount on conference registration for performing members of group
  • Listing in WOB website and printed festival schedules
  • Artist sells own merchandise and keeps 100% of sales
  • Tent, table and chairs provided near your stage

Any artist or band who plays bluegrass music, or a closely-related style, is encouraged to apply. There is no fee to submit an application, and while IBMA membership is not required, preference is given to members. As many as 80 different acts will be chosen by Pinecone, who manages these stages.

Further information and application form can be found online.

And finally, IBMA is still accepting applications for Bluegrass Ramble showcase artists through February 28. These are the prestigious official showcase acts who perform at least twice during the main convention, September 26-28. If your band would like to be considered, be sure to get all the required information together and submit before the end of the month.

Additional details concerning the 2023 World of Bluegrass events can always be found online.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.