A valid Busker Licence must be visible at all times while performing.  Tenants, visitors and CMHC Granville Island staff must be able to tell, at a glance, that a busker is registered.

All Access Licence holders may perform as individuals, duets or trios.  Whether busking as an individual or as part of a duo/trio, the one-set-per-location-per-day rule and instrument restrictions still apply.

A Circle Act, within the Granville Island Busking Program, is defined as a show that gathers and maintains a crowd around the performer for the duration of the act. The act has a distinct beginning, middle and end. The show often includes the use of dangerous props and requires a clear separation between the actor and the crowd. These acts are done in conjunction with street theater, magic, comedy, acrobatics and juggling.

A Variety Act, within the Granville Island Busking Program, is defined as a series of short unrelated performances or acts, such as comedy turns, up-close magic, etc. The show does not include the use of dangerous props and therefore does not need a clear separation between the audience and the actor.  A Variety Act is a scaled down version of the Circle Show.

Circle Show and Variety performers must attend the Morning Draw at 10am in the Picnic Pavilion to sign up for the specific locations. Attendance at the draw must be in person – agents or representatives are not allowed to sign up on a busker’s behalf.

Setup and strike MUST happen within the allotted set times – no exceptions.  Under no circumstance may a busker setup or start their set early.  They must also not stay beyond their end time:  this includes not being a physical presence on, or near the pitch so as to cause distraction for/to the next busker.  Even if there is no busker scheduled immediately after a busker’s set, the same rule applies.  Regardless of what activity is taking place, staying beyond your end time is a violation.

If a busker is late or doesn’t arrive to a set, the location will be held for a maximum of 10 minutes before it is opened up to other buskers. Buskers wishing to use unclaimed spots must contact the Busker Coordinator at 604-834-1567 prior to performing.  In all cases, the one-set-per-location-per-day rule and instrument restrictions still apply.

There are THREE locations available to Circle Shows:

  1. Triangle Square
  2. Public Market Courtyard
  3. Ocean Artworks

Circle Show and Variety Act performers must not sign up back to back at Triangle Square location.

There are four locations available to Variety Acts:

  1. Triangle Square
  2. Pubic Market Courtyard
  3. Island Plaza
  4. Ocean Artworks

Circle and Variety performers must ensure that the audience does not block or impede traffic in any way.  Buskers must actively move people forward and off the roadway throughout the entire performance.  AUDIENCE SAFETY IS PARAMOUNT.  Groups or individuals not respecting this guideline may be prohibited from completing their performance and may receive a hole punched to their busking licence. A non-performing member of the group may be needed to ensure that the audience does not occupy the roadway.

On Thursdays from June until October at Triangle Square, the Granville Island Farmers Market takes place.  Circle Show performances are not permitted in Triangle Square during this time.

(from April 1 to September 31)

On Weekends and Stat Holidays the Triangle Square and Public Market Courtyard locations will have up to two alternating spots each reserved for Circle and Group acts. If three or more Circle and/or Group acts attend the draw on weekdays, the weekend reserved spot policy applies.

The times reserved for the Circle and Group acts at the two locations will alternate monthly at CMHC Granville Island’s discretion. When the Reserved Spots Policy is in effect Circle Show and Variety Act performers may NOT sign up back to back at Triangle Square.


Circle and Variety Act performers must retain complete control of every aspect of their performance.

Performers using fire (permitted exclusively in the Public Market Courtyard location) and /or other dangerous props in their act must demonstrate a high level of skill and control when handling these items.

Buskers requesting to perform with fire, and/or include fire, in their acts are required to submit ALL the items on a list specified by CMHC Granville Island. (This list will be provided at the time of the registration to interested performers).

CMHC Granville Island reserves the right to refuse a busker permission to perform, or to halt a performance, if their use of dangerous props is considered unsafe.

A defined separation of a minimum 3 to 5 meters must be created and maintained between the performance and the audience when dangerous props and / or fire are being used.

Performers using fire or other dangerous props must familiarize themselves with the First Aid location (in the Public Market directly across from The Smoke Shop).

Buskers are responsible for any and all injury or damage to persons or property. Buskers using fire or dangerous props MUST complete the Use of Fire and Dangerous Props Declaration.

*Public Market Courtyard is the ONLY permitted location for fire busking on Granville Island. The CoV Special Events Division of Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services have identified this specific location for the use of fire in a performance. The CMHC Granville Island Busking Coordinator will review the precise location with each busker who wishes to use fire as a part of their act on Granville Island.