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Upcoming Programs

  • United Arab Emirates
    A person seated, facing away, paints a large mural depicting an Arab woman wearing head and face coverings, listening to pink headphones connected to a device playing music, on a background of bright teal with pink and orange dots.
  • Earth Optimism
    Seen underwater, three people snorkeling in shallow water examine green algae on a rock.

Our Purpose

  • Since 1967, the purpose of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival has been to collaborate with cultural practitioners, communities, and heritage professionals to spark curiosity, catalyze intercultural exchange, and create participatory experiences that nurture human connection.

    Through research, curation, live programs, and digital storytelling, the Festival communicates an unwavering commitment to representing diverse cultures as a positive force for cultural equity, inclusivity, and the common good.

Featured Video

Support the Folklife Festival, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, sustainability projects, educational outreach, and more.