The Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival is very proud to announce that at tonight’s opening session of the 35th annual Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival, Fergus O’Byrne will be officially presented with this year’s lifetime achievement award. As a singer, musician and educator, Fergus O’Byrne has been a major part of the musical landscape of Newfoundland and Labrador for 40 years. Born in Dublin, Ireland, Fergus first visited Newfoundland in the late 1960’s and was struck by Newfoundland’s vast cultural and musical heritage. He made the province his home in 1971 and became a founding member of the folk group Ryan’s Fancy.
Although we are sure he has a long career still ahead of him, the Folk Arts Society is proud to honour Fergus with our Lifetime Achievement Award. Fergus has a great heart for singing, and a powerful voice to match” says Anita Best, President of the Folk Arts Society”. “Throughout his career, O’Byrne has been deeply involved with the continuation of local songs, a matter close to his heart. He has also been instrumental in the transmission of traditional songs and tunes to the next generation through the very popular “Young Folk in the Hall” series he has conducted across the Province. More than anything, Fergus O’Byrne is a working folk musician who continues to make his living in his chosen home of Newfoundland doing what he loves to do.”