In conjunction with the opening of the box office for the 2018 festival, we are launching two competitions – our annual Band Competition and new for this year – our Youth Folk Challenge. Details of how to enter both can be found on our Workshops page. Closing dates for both competitions is 28th April 2018. The festival Band Competition has gone from strength to strength over the years and is now noted as a key opportunity for up and coming amateur folk & roots acts to gain recognition on the festival circuit and perform on stage with some of the top acts around. The winning entry from the Band Competition will be awarded the opening performance of the 2018 festival on the main concert stage on Friday 13th July. The new Youth Folk Challenge is intended to provide a platform for talented local young people under 20 years of age to perform in a festival setting and showcase their skill.  This is for solo or duo acts or groups all aged under 20 years as at the 13th July 2018. Winning entries will be invited to play a 15 minute set on Friday night at Ely Folk Festival 2018.