The Winnipeg Folk Festival has named folk singer Ani DiFranco the winner of its annual Artistic Achievement Award.
The 43-year-old American singer-songwriter, who will be honoured at the festival’s gala fundraiser Nov. 22, joins previous winners Sarah Harmer, Leon Redbone, Loreena McKennitt and Billy Bragg. Since 2004, the organization has bestowed the award on a past festival performer who has made exceptional contributions to folk music and the community.
The feminist icon first appeared at the festival in 1992 when her message-driven folk songs first began to inspire and empower her audience. DiFranco is an advocate for social and environmental sustainability and steers her business with those values.
"It is an honour to be recognized with such esteemed company," said DiFranco, in a press release. "I am happy to inspire new artists to be in control of their careers and make responsible choices when running their business."
The fundraiser called Folk Festival In The City supports the festival’s education and outreach programs. Last year it raised more than $49,000.
Tickets are $150 and are on sale now through the Winnipeg Folk Festival office at (204) 231-0096 and online at winnipegfolkfestival.ca. A tax receipt will be issued for the charitable portion of the ticket price.