Private Showcases

 Site updates for the 2019 conference in Montréal are underway. Some information may be outdated, check back soon for updates.

FAI is one of the few music industry conferences that offers everyone in attendance the opportunity to present independent showcases and allows all artists to play self-presented sets for all attending industry representatives. Private Showcases are not open to the public.

Rebecca Loebe - photo by Jake Jacobson

Where, When & What?

Private Showcases take place on the 5th, 6th and 7th floors of the Westin Hotel in actual hotel rooms and suites. Each individual room is contracted out to a Private Showcase Presenter who in turn books and schedules performances of registered conference attendees. Anyone can apply to become a Private Showcase Presenter (examples: labels, organizations, agents, artists etc.)

Private Showcases are late night events and take place Wednesday through Saturday (10:00pm - 4am on Wednesday, and 10:30pm - 4am Thursday thru Saturday). Some rooms also present artists in the afternoons (2pm-4pm) Thursday-Saturday. Each conference attendee receives a Pocket Guide that lists all Private Showcase performances.

Private Showcases are acoustic (no amplification or sound systems in standard rooms; limited sound in the suites and premium rooms) and run from 15-30 minutes depending on the presenter. Some presenters charge a nominal fee to help underwrite the costs of the room and hospitality. Average fees run between $20-$30 per slot. Many do not charge and some trade slots for performance slots in other rooms.

Lyal Strickland - photo by James Dean

How to Perform in a Private Showcase


Folk Alliance members are encouraged to post to the Private Showcase Forum. Your post should include a live video clip (of the act which will be performing at the conference), a short bio, and contact info. See sample post in the forum for instructions. Private Showcase Presenters receive a weekly digest of the forum to book acts for their rooms. Additionally, if you already know of a Private Showcase Presenter, you may reach out to them directly. You must be registered for the conference to play in a Private Showcase.

  Private Showcase Forum
Once you click, you can view the forum but will need to log in to your FAI member account to post to the forum.


If you are not a member of Folk Alliance, you will need to research the Private Showcase Presenter list in advance before reaching out to presenters with a personal (not bulk!) email. If you already know of a Private Showcase Presenter, you may reach out to them directly. Possibly your record label or geographic region is hosting a room. As a non-member you may view, but not post to, the Private Showcase Forum.

A Note for First-Timers

Folk Alliance hosts two First-Timer Private Showcase rooms. Signups will open in the fall.

Photo by Jayne Toohey

Tips for Getting a Private Showcase

Mission Statement

The mission of Folk Alliance International is to nurture, engage, and empower the international folk music community - traditional and contemporary, amateur and professional - through education, advocacy and performance.

Additional Conference Events

2019 FAI Conference

DATE: February 13-17, 2019

LOCATION:  Fairmont Queen Elizabeth Hotel, Montréal, Québec, Canada

UPCOMING DEADLINES:  Early Bird member registration ends May 31, 2018