Albany Maritime Festival sets sail without Folk ‘N’ Shanty Festival amid COVID-19 restrictions

Sarah MakseAlbany Advertiser
Albany Shantymen at the Albany Boatshed.
Camera IconAlbany Shantymen at the Albany Boatshed. Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

The inaugural Albany Maritime Festival will go ahead this week without the Albany International Folk ‘N’ Shanty Festival, which has been postponed until October because of nationwide COVID-19 restrictions.

More than 50 acts from around the country were scheduled to travel to Albany to take part in the shanty festival, with several international groups set to perform via live stream.

On Friday, Albany International Folk ‘N’ Shanty Festival organisers issued a statement saying many acts were unable to travel to Albany because of the latest COVID-19 restrictions.

They proposed to reschedule the festival until the first weekend of October. “The recent community transmission of COVID-19 had also created a significant issue in securing adequate insurance for Albany International Folk ‘N’ Shanty Festival 2021 on the planned dates,” the statement said.

“The committee was faced with the choice between holding a drastically scaled-down event or delivering the full program at a later date.”

In a separate statement rel-eased on Friday, the City of Albany said it was “very disappointed” the shanty festival organisers had decided to “cancel their in-volvement in the maritime festival”.

“The City remains committed to delivering the maritime festival in collaboration with other stakeholders, and in line with the current State health advice,” the statement said.

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