Six city blocks, 180 booths filled with art, nearly 30,000 people over three days — and three stages of live music, plus a dozen roaming street performers.
That’s the annual RiverArtsFest in downtown Memphis, and I programmed all the festival’s live entertainment for four years.
Memphis legends and new discoveries. Blues, rock, soul, gospel, a string quartet, mimes, even a tap-dancing troupe — I developed a tapestry of entertainment designed to draw new patrons, appeal to the existing audience (everyone from 8 to 80), and enhance the festival’s reputation as a diverse, original, and very Memphis event.
It worked. Attendance grew, sponsorship increased, and patrons raved about the music and the overall vibe of the event. The artists loved the local talent and the happy crowds, and they sold more art.
And RiverArtsFest has become one of the region’s most successful festivals.