We know that the title of this article might sound like PR for the sequel to a sci-fi movie rather than talking about Buskers Festivals are returning to the streets for 2022, but don’t get us wrong, get ready to be on the edge of your seat for entertainment that is out of this would! The virtual and limited venues were okay, wrong but nothing beats the excitement of large crowds for the entertainers and spectators not to mention the tremendous economic spin off that these events generate for the host towns and cities with hundreds and even thousands of people visiting these areas to watch these amazing street performers from all over the globe. Not only is it great for hotels, restaurants, and bars that have struggled over the pandemic, but other retail sectors will also see the spin off with increased visitor presence. Plus, these festivals are also a great way for local, national, and international businesses to advertise to promote their brand and make these events possible at the same time.
These festivals are set for all different ages, with the more family friendly events during the day and then more adult appropriate content for the evening performances truly offering something for everyone to enjoy. These festivals are somewhat unique in that the majority of the income that the artists receive for their work during the festival comes not from the festival organizers, but from the goodwill of the audience. Hats are passed around after each performance, and audience members are encouraged, but not required, to tip the performer for their work or how much you enjoyed the show.
These are the buskers’ festivals that made our bucket list for 2022 and all will offer something for everyone with amazing venues to enjoy the spectacular world class performers and performances.
Salt Lake City Busker Fest
When: June 24th – 25th, 2022
Where: Salt Lake City, UT, USA
Why: Busking is a time-honored tradition that adds to the vibrancy and culture of cities around the world. Busker Fest is held annually in Salt Lake City to showcase local and traveling street performers. The festival celebrates the city’s rich Vaudeville history by bringing the living tradition of busking and street theatre to downtown.
Don’t miss the main event! Stroll along Main Street, Regent Street and Gallivan Ave to see traveling and local street performers at the annual Salt Lake City Busker Festival. The festival is free and open to the public and in true buskers fashion offers great entertainment that is appropriate for all ages. Busker Fest will thrill audiences with musicians, dancers, hula-hoopers, jugglers, and comedy. Performers will accept donations.
Visit https://www.buskerfestslc.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Kamloops International Buskers Festival
When: July 21st, – 24th, 2022
Where: Kamloops, BC, Canada
Why: Kamloops is located in British Columbia’s Interior, Kamloops is more than a city, it’s a state of mind. Resting on the shores of where two picturesque rivers, the North and South Thompson rivers meet to a backdrop of amazing scenery. This summer Kamloops welcomes the world to beautiful Riverside Park as professional street performers from the local region, across Canada, and around the world, will converge for the 3rd annual Kamloops International Buskers.
There will be two stages located in the east end of Riverside Park and a third stage located on the west end near the waterpark. Multiple busk stop locations throughout Riverside Park will feature an amazing variety of professional street performers. The festival is free tips to Buskers hats welcomed and appreciated!
Visit http://kamloopsbuskers.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Halifax Busker Festival
When: July 27th – August 1st, 2022
Where: Halifax & Dartmouth, NS, Canada
Why: After a tumultuous two years with a virtual festival and reduced capacity shows, the Halifax Busker Festival, which was founder in 1986, has plans to celebrate the reopening by coming back bigger than ever with an expansion to the Dartmouth Waterfront offering many additional attractions and venues for festival goes to attend before and after each day’s events making it an experience like no other as festival goers have a unlimited supply of restaurants, pubs, shops and spectacular views of the Halifax Harbour and for that reason it has been selected for our buskers bucket list for 2022 and a top pick for the third consecutive year.
The festival features hilarious, wacky, and breathtaking entertainment that can only be found at the annual Halifax Busker Festival that is back after the pandemic and ready to treat spectators to mind blowing shows from the world’s top street performance artists as they showcase their unique talents and skills with acrobatics, music, visual arts, comedy, fire shows, and so much more.
There is truly something for everyone from the young to the young at heart. With family friendly performances by day and more adult focused entertainment by night with stages all along the beautiful Halifax Waterfront.
Visit https://buskers.ca/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Ottawa International Buskerfest
When: July 29th, – August 1st, 2022
Where: Ottawa, ON, Canada
Why: Well, the venue is amazing at Historical Sparks Street, which is a vibrant capital city destination offering everything from shopping to a relaxing drink at a pub and is home to Ottawa’s favourite festivals like the Ottawa International Buskers Festival. This festival offers 4 exciting days of street performers on 4 stages that will dazzle your senses and captivate the imagination of over 175,000 attendees. It is always a good time with friends and family with amazing street performers.
Spectators should be prepared to be enthralled by fire-breathers, contortionists, acrobats and more. Get ready for stomach clenching comedy too, these performers all know how to make an audience laugh.
Visit https://ottawabuskerfestival.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Edmonton International Street Performers Festival
When: July 8th – 17th, 2022
Where: Edmonton, AB, Canada
Why: Founded in 1985, StreetFest is the first and largest festival of its kind in North America. For 37 years now unicyclists, puppeteers, tightrope walkers, acrobats many international, national, and local performers have unleashed a daily juggernaut of over 150 zany and outlandish outdoor performances and street theatre acts when the International Street Performers Festival turns Dr. Wilbert Mcintyre Park into busker central during this amazing event.
A creative whirlwind of acts – witty and wonderful, kooky and comical or just plain silly – this is the best of entertainment and art on a street level with family-friendly variety shows launching an improv interaction…with you at Sir Winston Churchill Square.
Visit http://edmontonstreetfest.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
The Miramichi International Buskers Festival
When: August 25th – 28th, 2022
Where: Miramichi, NB, Canada
Why: Street performers from around the world converge in Miramichi for the 2nd annual buskers festival at Waterford Green, Ferry Park and on Water Street. This year will present acts from Santiago, Melbourne, and Toronto through Quebec City, including Guinness World Record Holders, Pele’s favorite soccer entertainer from South America, North America’s top hula hoop duo team, and more!
Each afternoon you can visit the Water Street music stage for live music or stroll the history river city and visit its many restaurants, shops and businesses the region offers.
Visit https://tourismnewbrunswick.ca/festivals-events/miramichi-international-buskers-festival for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Waterloo Busker Carnival
When: August 25th – 28th, 2022
Where: Waterloo, ON, Canada
Why: The Waterloo Busker Carnival is fun for the whole family with something for all ages. Started in 1989, the carnival is now considered to be one of the premier busker carnivals not just in Canada but around the world, with over 80 thousand people enjoying the carnival-like atmosphere. If you have never attended, get this one on your bucket list and get ready to visit the midway, explore delicious foods and join the many others at the edge of their seats as they watch spectacular world-class one-of-a-kind performers that are sure to amaze, excite and inspire!
Admission to the Carnival is FREE. The artists make their living by the tips they receive. While they receive some travel assistance they are not paid by the Carnival. After each show, the artists will pass the hat for your tips and donations. If you enjoyed the show, please contribute an amount that you can afford as a thank you. How much you tip is up to you.
Visit http://waterloobuskers.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
Toronto International Buskerfest
When: September 2nd – 5th, 2022
Where: Toronto, ON, Canada
Why: Because it’s spontaneous, it’s outrageous; it’s fun, funny, and fabulous – there is literally something for everyone at the Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy.
The festival features spectacular circus artistry, non-verbal shows that can be understood by all, and one-of-a-kind entertainment that will have you questioning your very eyes. Music, magic, and mime; feats of the impossible, and the ridiculous performed by comedians, fire jugglers, acrobats, aerial artists, clowns, daredevils, beat boxers, break-dancers and much more. Four days of non-stop, action-packed fun!
What many spectators don’t realize is that this world class festival not only supports a local charitable organization, Epilepsy Toronto, it is organized and run by them and is their largest fundraiser of the year.
So, if the amazing talent at the festival was not enough to attend then the fact that you will be supporting Epilepsy Toronto, we can’t think of a better reason to attend!
Visit http://torontobuskerfest.com/ for details on the special shows, events and performing acts.
We are excited to see the buskers are back after a two-year hiatus of virtual festivals and reduced capacity shows. As you can see there are many amazing buckers festivals to choose from for this summer. So, whether you are looking to sponsor one of these events or just taking the family out to watch some of the best international street entertainers from all over the world as they share their performance with you, remember donations are appreciated and willingly accepted.
by Ryan Myson