Viva Big Bend
Alpine, Marfa, Fort Davis, Marathon, and Terlingua
Viva Big Bend must be the biggest small music festival anywhere, filling almost every stage in five communities across three of Texas’s largest, but least populated, counties every July.
A project of Texas Music magazine in partnership with the communities of Alpine, Marfa, Fort Davis, Marathon, and Terlingua, each year Viva brings 60+ live performances spanning multiple genres to the Big Bend region.
Unlike most festivals that bring their audiences to a large central area, Viva Big Bend puts a focus on supporting the local venues that are the backbone of the music industry year-round, booking acts for 10+ stages each year. Popular statewide acts share stages with local favorites, fostering new connections and making a rich musical stew for the venue- and town-hopping visitor.
The festival maintains a balance of ticketed and free events, offering afternoon music in several venues at no cost throughout the four days of the event. Special children’s shows are also scheduled each year.
The distance between the towns and their venues—for example, more than 80 miles between Alpine and Terlingua—is an asset rather than a drawback, as the scenic desert mountain drives between the towns immerse festival-goers in the Big Bend landscape, as much a part of the event experience as the music.
Viva Big Bend 2021 occurred during the summertime lull between the national surges in COVID-19 cases and was safely and successfully executed. It was a very welcome return to in-person musical fellowship for these communities and their visitors.