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The Will McLean Festival Youth Program

Our Youth Program provides a variety of engaging opportunities for youth of all ages to participate in the Will McLean Festival.

No experience necessary! (Seriously, no musical experience necessary!!)

Participating in the Youth Program allows youth of any experience level to become inspired or continue exploring their love of music. Come join us!

For Developing Young Musicians

The Youth Song Collaboration

A beloved highlight of each year’s festival is the Youth Song Collaboration. Youth participating in the Youth Program gather at the beginning of the festival and collaborate to create an original song all their own. Throughout the weekend, they develop and practice the song, and perform it on the main Magnolia Stage at the conclusion of the festival. All youth are invited to join the collaboration. 

For ALL Youth Interested in Music

The Shooting Star Stage

The Shooting Star Stage is a dedicated venue for the festival’s Youth Program. It hosts a variety of workshops, the Youth Program Breakfast Meet and Greet, the Youth Song Collaboration, and the Battle of the Bands. It also serves as a meeting point and gathering place for the Youth Program during the festival weekend.

The Shooting Star Showcase

Young musicians and young musical groups seeking performance opportunities may apply for a spot in the festival’s beloved Shooting Star Showcase. Traditionally held on Saturday afternoon on the Azalea Stage, this Showcase features some of the best of our young performers, many of whom have grown up through the years developing their musical talent through the festival’s Youth Program. 

The Battle of the Bands

The annual Battle of the Bands is another beloved tradition of the Will McLean Festival. This event provides the unique opportunity for young musicians to meet and closely collaborate with new friends, stretch the limits of their talents, support each other, and have a tremendous amount of fun in the process. Participating youth are assigned to different bands and have the opportunity to collaborate and practice in preparation for the contest on Sunday afternoon.

Get Registered for the Youth Program

To sign up for any or all of the events that are part of the youth program, contact…. Or Click here. There is no cost to youth to participate, and youth can choose to participate in some or all of the activities throughout the weekend.

The Krieger Family Band

The Krieger Family Band, from West Palm Beach, FL, plays a diversity of instruments and sings with a distinctive harmony. They have been playing for about six years, incorporating gospel, bluegrass, Celtic, old time and other types of music. The band has performed at Barberville music festivals, Will McLean festivals, the Florida Old Time Music Championship, the South Florida Fair, and is scheduled to perform at this coming Florida Folk Festival.

James Huston

James Huston started playing the fiddle at the age of 10 years old and at 14 he has added piano and Native American flute. He has performed for President and Mrs. Jimmy Carter. James is performing, backed up by Dave and Diane Berry, who is the balance of their Trio, "Red Wolf Strings".

Bus 86

Bus 86 is a family band put together by Casey, the oldest son, who has participated in the Young Musician's Program for several years and is now writing his own songs. Mom, dad, and brother. Talon, are happy to support his broadening talents with their own.

Madi Car

N.P.R. - The Jones Boys

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