What a joy Nottingham’s Light Night Festival is! Every year for the past 11 years, for one bracing Friday evening in February, families descend on the city to enjoy the illuminations – from fire juggling to lasers, projections onto public buildings to lantern parades, it’s a feast for the senses and the light shows are complemented with musical accompaniment and warming food and drinks.
This year, Team Curious took part in two distinct halves. We were commissioned by Nottingham City Council to send our Curious Paraphernalia Perambulator out on its first public outing and it was a proper perambulation across Nottingham’s fair city, entertaining the public on the way! We must have stopped a hundred times for photographs and videos – when we finally arrived at the historic Brewhouse Yard there was barely time to set up and folks were in and at the zoetrope, kaleidescopes and stereoscope! It was a joy to see the wonder on the faces of everyone from tiny tots to significantly older individuals as they hand-cranked the zoetrope and the lace-inspired pierced pop-up lanterns cast multicoloured shadows across the vegetable patch and warmed up the very chilly Light Night evening.
Meanwhile, back at Curious HQ on Sneinton Market Avenues, the Peacock Parade was in full effect – teaming up with Burt and Joyce, City Arts’ magical magpies and drummers and wonderfully lit carnival costumes from our neighbours ABC Dance School and EMCCAN, the Curious Peacock led our lantern-wielding friends on a parade around the Avenues and the outdoor Sneinton Market area, delighting the gathered crowds.
It really was a fabulous night all over the city, but there was a very special feel to Light Night at Sneinton Market Avenues this year, with a light show, live music, crafts and street food market, the tenants’ windows decorated with shadow puppets, lanterns and lights, workshops, cabaret and of course, the Peacock Parade – it just shows you what can happen when a community comes together.
No doubt, the theme of light will continue as we tiptoe amongst the remaining snowdrops into the first days of Spring…
~ Manton x