The Board of Directors of Mission Folk Music Festival Society (MFMFS) and Artistic Director Francis Xavier Edwards have ended their association following 28 years of Xavier’s remarkable service to the community.
Xavier, the festival founder and Artistic Director, informed the Board of his decision earlier in the week.
On his time with Mission, he stated “I have made a significant investment in this community and hope the District will respond by supporting an event treasured by the community. I look forward to pursuing other projects and the first free summer in 28 years.”
MFMFS Board President John Vissers said, “The Board and I are incredibly grateful for the opportunities provided to the community of Mission to experience the music that Francis has brought to the Festival over the last 28 years. He had an artistic vision and passion for world music that resulted in some stunning programming. To think that we were able to see Buffy Sainte-Marie, Valdy, Loreena McKennitt, Judy Collins, Ian Tyson, David Francey, and other world class artists on stage in Mission is simply amazing.”
Each year the MFMF draws upwards of 10,000 people to the world music festival in Fraser River Heritage Park. This infusion of folks has added greatly to the cultural fabric of the community and to the local economy every summer.
The international scope of the event has also attracted an international audience. In 2015, online ticket purchases were made from Brazil, New York, Norway, Pennsylvania, Scotland, every western US state and several provinces. Previous years have seen tickets purchased from several European countries, Asia, South America and Africa.
The Mission Folk Music Festival Society is a registered Canadian charity and non-profit society dedicated to music and culture.