Pardon the Winterruption: New music fest coming to Regina, Saskatoon

The first-ever Winterruption Music Festival takes place from Jan. 21-23 in Regina and Saskatoon.

Artists include Whitehorse, Andy Shauf, the Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer, Alex Cuba

Sandra Butel says she has a lot to be grateful for.

The weather outside is far from frightful, but in the words of Winterfell, "winter is coming."

Luckily, the eventual cold will not prevent Saskatchewan music fans from seeing great shows this January.

Several great Canadian artists have confirmed they will brave the cold this winter in Regina and Saskatoon for Winterruption, a new music festival based on a partnership between the Regina Folk Festival and The Broadway Theatre in Saskatoon.

It will bring acts such as Whitehorse, Andy Shauf, the Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer, Alex Cuba, and Fred Penner to the frigid prairies.

The lineup for the first-ever Winterruption music festival. (Regina Folk Festival)

Regina Folk Festival artistic director Sandra Butel told Saskatchewan Weekend host Eric Anderson this is what they do best: bring people together.

"We figured that it wasn't enough that we do it every summer," Butel said. "We wanted to be able to draw people together in the worst part of the year — or maybe the coldest part of the year."

While the goal is to put on several great shows, Butel said it's nice to give people a reason to get out of their homes in January.

"Maybe ending some of that isolation that we all feel in the winter time," Butel said, laughing.

The multi-show, multi-venue festival is much smaller than the Regina Folk Festival, and Butel said it's a great start.

"Finding people touring is much more tricky than in the summer time," she said. "But we're working with the Broadway Theatre in Saskatoon. Being able to offer a couple shows at the same time, and working with partners who are doing other festivals in other provinces, we'll start to build a little bit of a route for people."

There are currently 10 artists locked up for the inaugural Winterruption. 

"They know that we're going to put on something good, whether or not it's ever existed before," Butel said. "I'm pretty happy with how it came together in the end. And glad that so far we're getting really nice reactions from people."

The first annual Winterruption Music Festival takes place from Jan. 21-23 in Regina and Saskatoon. Find tickets here.


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