2021 Festival Dates:
Sept 23 - 26, 2021
The annual Lotus World Music and Arts Festival celebrates the
diversity, beauty, and joy of music and arts from cultures around the world.
Lotus is committed to selecting world-class performers who represent the highest standards of musicianship and professionalism. Lotus is distinguished among festivals by not relying on “headliners”, but rather presenting a non-hierarchical mix of performers and prioritizing discovery and inspiring encounters with the new and often unfamiliar. Lotus is also somewhat unique in considering American music as part of the “world” in “world music”– be that American roots and folk music, or music reflecting our tapestry of immigrant experiences. Each year, the festival typically showcases a roster of 25-30 different artists or groups.
- COMING SOON -
Enjoy all that Bloomington has to offer by staying in town for the whole Festival weekend! Downtown Bloomington is known for its thriving arts scene, numerous galleries, farmers market, access to outdoor recreation, and an incredibly diverse selection of world-class restaurants. It’s easy to stay and to get around — we’ve provided some helpful info below, or you can access additional resources via our local tourism bureau.
Most downtown parking in Bloomington, Indiana is metered (although it’s still reasonable by big-city standards). Meters accept change or credit cards, or you can use the Parkmobile app to pay from your mobile device. There are also several large parking garages downtown — please visit the City’s website for locations and rates.
Some areas near downtown are reserved for special, permitted use. Observe all signs for residential (“Residents Only”) or campus parking (Permit required) restrictions when you encounter them in parking lots and on some street blocks.
Bloomington boasts a wide array of lodging choices for every budget — start exploring now at the Visit Bloomington website. Many local hotels also offer special Lotus rates for Festival weekend, so be sure to mention “Lotus” when making your booking! For additional lodging information, please contact Visit Bloomington at 800-800-0037 or 812-334-8900.
Over the last 25 years, Lotus has hosted nearly 575 artists or ensembles from 120+ different countries or culturally distinct regions. The Festival regularly attracts an unusually multi-generational audience, participation from local and regional ethnic/cultural communities, and a significant out-of-town population from across the state and across the country. Estimates in partnership with our local Visitors Bureau calculate that Bloomington enjoys an annual economic impact of ~$500,000 on each Festival weekend.
The Festival is proudly based in downtown Bloomington and named in part for Indiana musician Lotus Dickey (1911-1989).
A wristband is your passport to multiple performances each showcase night, at multiple venues. Stages range from the Buskirk-Chumley Theater to standing-room-only street tents, to churches where traditional music shines.
Lotus offers both ticketed showcases and free events for all ages. Saturday’s Lotus in the Park is packed with live performances, hands-on art projects, and interactive workshops with Festival artists.
Keep your options open for the unusual and the unexpected.
* Artists & Agents: Please read this before you contact us *
If you wish to inquire about performing at our fall Festival, or in our spring Lotus Blossoms educational outreach programming, send a brief e-mail introducing yourself and your music to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include links to your website, YouTube links, SoundCloud, social media, or whatever other materials will help us fully understand what you have to offer.
Please note: We receive hundreds of inquiries each year and unfortunately do not have the resources or staff to reply to all inquiries, to discuss your work, or to respond to questions regarding your submission.
For each Lotus World Music & Arts Festival, we begin with an artist list that far exceeds a final roster of approximately 25 artists. Our staff selects artists based on the strength of their performances and material, as well as their fit with our international roster. We discover artists through conferences, recommendations, and direct submissions and usually avoid repeating artists over several years to give others an opportunity and to present fresh programming to our audiences.
If we are interested in learning more, we will contact you. Please, do not call the office to inquire about your submission — we appreciate your understanding.
Thank you for your interest.