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About Okanagan Rhythm Fest

The Okanagan Rhythm Festival (ORF) is a celebration of world drumming, percussion, and rhythmic music and dance. With two days of performances, workshops, drum and dance parties, and drum circles, ORF is one festival in the British Columbia Interior you won't want to miss. Our fourth festival, ORF’13, promises to be bigger and better than ever!

ORF brings together musicians, dancers and participants from throughout the Okanagan for a fun and energetic community event. The professional musicians in the festival live in the North, South, and Central Okanagan Valley and play a wide variety of traditional and contemporary world music. The festival includes African, Middle Eastern, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, Japanese, Latin-American, and modern North American rhythmic music.

The success of our previous ORF festivals in 2009, 2010 and 2012 showed that there was a distinct need to hold a festival like this. ORF allows participants to experiment with different forms of drum and dance. It gives people a safe and supportive environment in which to experience multicultural music and dance forms they might not otherwise challenge themselves to try.

About the ORF Cooperative

The Okanagan Rhythm Festival Cooperative is a nonprofit, community service cooperative that is the parent organization that produces ORF. The organization of ORF is managed and run by the volunteer efforts of the members of the cooperative.

The cooperative was established in response to the overwhelming desire of drum and percussion teachers, facilitators and students in the Okanagan Valley to unite the whole Okanagan in a celebration of rhythmic music. In 2010 ORF became a registered cooperative, with a formal mission statement.

Among the goals of the ORF Cooperative is to bring together the community of rhythm-loving musicians, dancers, teachers, performers, and music-lovers from throughout the Okanagan. The ORF Cooperative members work to create a greater awareness, appreciation and enjoyment of various styles of drumming and rhythmic music and dance. The Cooperative strives to provide opportunities for local rhythm artists to gain exposure to the larger musical community and develop working relationships that foster innovative collaborations.

ORF Mission Statment

The purpose of the Okanagan Rhythm Fest Co-operative is to establish a Community Service Cooperative that will act as the lead organization to administer and present the Annual Okanagan Rhythm Fest (ORF), and to serve its primary mission to:

    a) unite intergenerational, low income, Ethnocultural and the General communities in the Okanagan and surrounding areas through educationally interactive workshops and performances with a focus on Rhythm that educate the public about the culture, language, or traditions of an ethnocultural community or communities;

    b) help people from disadvantaged communities to overcome social exclusion and isolation through capacity-building and community development initiatives;

    c) improving relations between communities for the elimination of discrimination and racism;

    d) develop annual school based programs that promote performances at ORF, and assist with ORF fundraising, promotion and presentation;

    e) provide opportunities for local artists to gain exposure to these communities and develop working relationships that foster innovative programming within art disciplines;

    f) facilitate collaborative planning between Members;

    g) secure funding to enable the Association to achieve economic sustainability to fulfill its goals and to provide for the needs of its members;

    h) facilitate joint promotion and the marketing of members and their interests, to better serve interests at the regional, provincial, and national level;

    i) pursue other priorities as determined by the Board of Directors from time to time;