Wanna play Bele Chere?

The snow may be flying, but Bele Chere, Asheville’s centerpiece street festival, is a measly six months away.

Last month, Bele Chere organizers announced that entertainer applications for the 2008 festival are posted online. Would-be performers must complete one and have it postmarked by Friday, Jan. 25, to be considered for the event.

Bele Chere is produced by the city of Asheville Parks and Recreation Department and the Bele Chere Board of Directors. The festival, which turns 30 this year, serves as a showcase for local, regional and national talent on six stages over the weekend of July 25-27. Past festivals have attracted as many as 300,000 attendees, many of them with a hankering for funnel cakes. Bele Chere hires more than 80 entertainers, from bands to street performers.

Think you’ve got the chops? For more information and an application, call Asheville Parks and Recreation at 259-5800 or visit the festival Web site.

— Kent Priestley, staff writer


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6 thoughts on “Wanna play Bele Chere?

  1. 15 dollar fee for local bands? Really? Pay to play policy is never a good one for indepent bands. Support independent music, not the music industry.

  2. Rob Close

    $15 to be told “no, you can’t street-perform. thanks for your money”.

  3. James

    Hey guys…I’ve been an supporter of independent music for years. I ran an internet radio station for Indie Music as well as did a weekly syndicated Radio show for it overseas and we are in the works of Launching MyBandsMusic.com.

    While I don’t agree with application fees or that the city should be trying to profit off the backs of Musicians when the musicians will be entertaining the Bele Chere crowds on the cities behalf $15 to enter to play at a festival is actually very cheap and inexpensive. Just have a look at what the normal festival/contest entry fees from promoters on Sonicbids and other sites.

  4. Yeah, correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t it something like fifty bucks last year?

    Fifteen dollars seems pretty fair. Wading through those entries can’t be all fun and games. You know, sitting down, listening to something terrible, and then scheduling it for the four p.m. slot on the Sierra Mist/Papa John’s “Hasta la Pizza” stage. Or whatever.

    That being said, give me fifteen dollars and I’ll make sure you won’t have to play Bele Chere.

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