Audiences brave rain for buskers

Some buskers' shows cancelled due to rain, but crowds come out to see performances nonetheless

Busker Yuki Veda focuses on juggling with flames on Saturday (July 16) at the Victoria International Buskers Festival held at Ship Point and on Langley Street. The festival continues until July 24.

Busker Yuki Veda focuses on juggling with flames on Saturday (July 16) at the Victoria International Buskers Festival held at Ship Point and on Langley Street. The festival continues until July 24.

The gloomy weather cancelled six buskers’ shows Sunday night, but crowds otherwise stuck out the drizzle and rain to support the inaugural Victoria International Buskers Festival over the weekend.

“Our stages were packed beyond viewing,” said event organizer John Vickers of attendance Friday and Saturday. When a downpour began midway through Australian performers Flame Oz, none of the 200 people on the bleachers moved, he added.

“People seemed to be really wowed,” Vickers said. “I’ve been inundated with people telling me they’re blown away by the quality of the acts.”

The festival launched July 15 and runs every day through next weekend, from noon to 10 p.m. at various locations downtown.

Some better weather would help merchandise sales, however, Vickers acknowledged.

So far, the festival has sold between 4,000 and 5,000 programs, at $2 each. At first, programs were only available at the Bay Centre, but Vickers recently made them available at all performance stages, as well as at Market on Yates and Tourism Victoria.

Check it out at www.victoriabuskers.com.

rholmen@vicnews.com