Lightpool Festival Events bring the Blackpool Illuminations to life. Enjoy (and join in with) a celebration of art, performance, light and fire. Find them all on the streets of Blackpool this October!
Lightpool Festival Events 2019
At a Glance…
- EXHIBITION RUNS FROM SAT 28 SEPT –SAT 14 DEC. A Trick of the Light, Grundy Art Gallery 10am –5pm
- OPENS FRI 11 OCT. Tower Projections Tower Festival Headland until the 3 Nov
- SAT 12 AND SUN 13 OCT. Lumidogs Workshops, Houndshill Shopping Centre
- MON 14 TO FRI 25 OCT (NOT AVAILABLE 18 OCT). Gaia Blackpool Tower Ballroom from 6pm – 10.30pm
- MON 14 TO SAT 26 OCT. SUN Olympia at the Winter Gardens from 6pm – 10pm
- MON 14 – SAT 26 OCT. Nightly Town Centre Art from 6pm –10.30pm
…and there’s more!
- WED 16 OCT. FIT2GLOW Final. Blackpool Tower Circus between 9.30am – 12pm
- THURS 17 OCT (LAUNCH EVENT), 21-24 OCT DANCE PERFORMANCES. Dancing Around the World. Blackpool Tower Ballroom 7pm–10.30pm
- FRI 18 OCT. Late at the Library. Central Library, Blackpool 6pm – 9pm
- SAT 19 OCT. Talking Heads. Tower Festival Headland 7pm – 9pm
- WED 23 – SAT 26 OCT. Wave-Field. St John’s Square from 6.00pm –10.30pm
- THURS 24 OCT. Carnival of the Lights. Start: 5:45pm, 6pm arrive at Central Pier. Performance at Comedy Carpet Start: 6.30pm
- FRI 25 OCT. Carnival Magic. Comedy Carpet between 7pm –8pm
- SAT 26 OCT. Pyronix presents Adonias. Comedy Carpet between 7pm –8pm
LUMIDOGS is Back!
Dog lovers and owners will be pleased to know that LUMIDOGS IS BACK! It’s the Illuminations event that all pet owners love. Everyone who wants to take part in it can do.
Come along to the workshops on 12 and 13 October at Houndshill Shopping Centre. You can make an illuminated outfit for your pet. They’re every hour between 10am and 2pm. A team of experts and costume designers will help you to make your illuminated costume for your dog. Taking part is absolutely FREE, simply sign up at eventbrite.co.uk.
You’ll also have the opportunity to have your stylish pooch photographed and given an instant copy to take away.
Then light up your pooch and join the Carnival of the Lights & Illuminated Tram Parade, on Thursday 24 October.
The amazing Carnival of the Lights
You’ll be pleased to know your favourite event is back again this year. Plans are for it to be BIGGER and BRIGHTER and the organisers want YOU to join in!
Gaia – one of the Lightpool Festival Events
Mon 14 –Fri 25 Oct (NOT AVAILABLE 18 Oct). At Blackpool Tower Ballroom between 6pm – 10.30pm
Gaia is a touring artwork by UK artist Luke Jerram. Measuring seven metres in diameter, it features 120dpi detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface*.
It provides the opportunity to see our planet on this scale, floating in three dimensions. Expect a feeling of awe for the planet, an understanding of the interconnection of all life, and a renewed sense of responsibility for taking care of the environment. A specially made surround sound composition by BAFTA award winning Composer Dan Jones is played alongside the sculpture.
In Greek Mythology Gaia is the personification of the Earth. The artwork is 1.8 million times smaller than the real Earth with each centimetre of the internally lit sculpture describing 18km of the Earth’s surface. Standing 211m away from the artwork to see the Earth as it appears from the moon.
*The imagery for the artwork has been compiled from Visible Earth series, NASA. Created in partnership with the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) , Bluedot Festival and The UK Association for Science and Discovery Centres. With supporting partners Culture Liverpool and Liverpool Cathedral. Image: Gareth Jones
Dancing around the World
Thurs 17 Oct (Launch Event) 21 –24 Oct Dance Performances, Blackpool Tower Ballroom 7pm –10.30pm
Dance in the UK’s most feted ballroom beneath Luke Jerram’s spectacular Earth installation, Gaia. The Tower Ballroom organists serenade you to an appropriate selection of night-themed classics. Or sit back and relax to enjoy entertainment from local dance schools at the launch event. Plus performances from schools on the other nights. Entrance is FREE, no dancing experience necessary.
Mon 14 to Sat 26 Oct Olympia, Winter Gardens 6pm –10pm Talks 7pm
A world premiere, SUN is a partnership between public artist Alex Rinsler and Professor Robert Walsh, one of the UK’s leading solar physicists.
SUN is a seven-metre diameter suspended sphere, presenting astrophysical data from NASA’s Solar Dynamic Observatory in stunning 360°. It displays several months in the life of our closest star but in tens of minutes of real time. This continually evolving globe reveals the SUN in extreme ultraviolet light, a part of the electromagnetic spectrum beyond human sight. Specialised image enhancement techniques highlight the finer details and texture of our solar neighbour, which would otherwise be lost. Cycling through different ranges of temperature from a cool 4500 degrees to an impossibly hot 10 million degrees, SUN reveals our star in a completely new light.
With support of public funding from Arts Council England and the Science and Technology Facilities Council, and technical production by Pufferfish. Co-commissioned by the Lightpool Festival, Blackpool and Light Up Lancaster.
These Lightpool Festival Events talks are accessible to a non-expert audience, and will include British Sign Language interpretation throughout the talks.
- Thursday 17th October 2019 – Our Dynamic Sun by Dr Helen Mason (University of Cambridge)
- Friday 18th October 2019 – The Search for Extrasolar Planets and Extra-terrestrial Life in the Milky Way by Dr Mark Norris (University of Central Lancashire)
- Thursday 24th October 2019 – When Galaxies Collide! by Dr Megan Argo (University of Central Lancashire)
- Friday 25th October 2019 – Living with a Star by Professor Robert Walsh (University of Central Lancashire)
A Trick of the Light at Grundy Art Gallery
The Grundy Art Gallery Exhibition runs from Sat 28 Sept –Sat 14 Dec 10am –5pm
Late night opening during the Lightpool Festival: Fri 18 Oct until 7pm, Fri 26 Oct until 6pm
Wed 16 Oct at Blackpool Tower Circus 9.30am – 12pm
This builds on the success of the first event in 2018. Lightpool Festival in partnership with Blackpool Football Club Community Trust is holding UV Football events for Blackpool Year 2 Primary Schools in October. Teams from all primary schools will don neon bibs, glow in the dark accessories and face paint for the 5-a-side competition. It’s an innovative and fun-filled event, just part of the Education and Health initiative work undertaken by BFCCT.
A perfect mix of fun, sport and family activity the heats take place at Blackpool Sports Centres. Two winning schools from each heat will participate in a fun-filled final, open to the public in The Blackpool Tower Circus. The winners will be crowned and awarded their unique trophy.
Late at the Library
Fri 18 Oct at Central Library, Blackpool 6pm – 9pm
Something a little different at Central Library – dim the lights, decorate the bookcases to bring you an evening of light engagement.
- Illuminations archive film footage
- Virtual reality 3D VR experience of the Lightpool Festival Light Odyssey concert with BBC Philharmonic
- Children’s reading by torchlight, with guest narrators. Complimentary booklet included ‘The Magical History of the The Blackpool Tower’.
- Archive Illuminations photography exhibition
- Blackpool Museum Project children’s illumination design
- Engaging workshops
- Please note all children must be accompanied by an adult over the age of 18.
Sat 19 Oct at Tower Festival Headland from 7pm –9pm
As dusk falls, three large translucent heads appear. All magically animated by projections.
Looking a bit like the giant Easter Island Heads, but each one of these moves, blinks, and seems almost alive. The giant heads speak and sing, as faces of the audience are mapped using 3-D face capture, their mouths animated to put words into them.
They show the faces of any audience members who use the quick self-portrait camera. Absolutely anyone can add their likeness and become part of the artwork. Then as we watch, the heads begin to speak, to tell tales and even sing short fragments of songs as we put words in their mouths – all fully lip-synced. Hear them speak and sing words they never said… Lightpool Festival Events are engaging, fun, and rewarding experience for audiences of all ages.
Wed 23 – Sat 26 Oct 6.00pm –10.30pm St John’s Square
Wave-Field is a series of eight giant see saws. They light up and make music as you bounce!
This magical piece has been brought from Canada by LeftCoast and Lightpool Festival to bring a playground to St John’s Square. Become immersed in the unique soundscape as the see saws move with their riders. Each one with its own temperament and creating its own melody.
Wave-Field is an ever-changing urban instrument – powered by you. Whether you join in or watch enjoy an organic symphony as the see saws light up and come to life. Wave-Field by Lateral Office and CS Design with soundscape by Mitchell Akiyama.
Fri 25 Oct at Tower Festival Headland from 7pm –8pm
An exhilarating menagerie of illuminated Carnival characters hit the Blackpool streets for an electrifying showcase of music, puppetry and dance.
A handpicked team of internationally recognised Carnival performers present a four-part showstopper. It’s a diverse melting pot of Carnival magic. From fire-breathing beasts to stunning illuminated dancers, there’s something for all the family.
Enjoy all this at Carnival Magic
- ROBOTS! Programmed to entertain, our illuminated drumming robots will wow the crowd. Controlled by the giant pink sparkly dancing robot queen; I.O.L.A 2.0, this entertaining street act will push you to party like it’s 2999.
- FIRE BREATHING BEASTS! Gasp and wonder at their fiery release. This show features striking puppets and exciting pyrotechnics mixed with a sinister and hypnotic performance. With sweeping wings and scorched metal, Toni the Fire Bat is a visitor from an ancient, magical past, awoken from the fiery belly of the Earth to fight Bessimer, the Fire-Breathing Dragon.
- CARNIVAL MAGIC! A 20-piece carnival band will spring to life and fill the stage with beautiful dancers in giant illuminated dresses, accompanied by red-hot carnival drummers and illuminated puppets Padmini and Shivaji, our Bollywood Prince and Princess.
- THE GRAND FINALE!The show will crescendo with a full cast presentation of all puppets and performers, encouraging the audience to take to the dance floor and boogie to our Global Grooves with friends old and new.
Pyronix presents Adonias
Sat 26 Oct at Tower Festival Headland between 7pm –8pm
Belgian performance troupe Pyronix invite you to immerse yourself in a fantastic universe where fire is at the heart of an endless struggle.
Adonias is the latest production from Pyronix. With a Celtic vibe in this colourful universe, where the red is master. Let them seduce you with medieval and catchy music, a mixture of poetry and technique. Adonias presents the ruthless competition that binds the most powerful fire masters.
With precise choreography and intense music, you’ll go on an outstanding and explosive visual journey. The artists will impress you with the objects they handle, from the immerse sphere to the flamethrower. Not forgetting the swirling embers into which they disappear.
This is a professional fire, light and pyrotechnic show. To bring the Comedy Carpet alight with an outstanding fire show extravaganza. Prepare for a breath-taking close to the Lightpool Festival, as Blackpool Tower is bathed in a cascade of shimmering fireworks.
Light Art Installations
Light art installations and displays will form a trail around Blackpool once again.
LightPool Festival Began in 2015…
On Saturday 10 October 2015 a stunning band of illuminated dancing drummers first performed “Spark!”
They’ve been back to Blackpool to perform at LightPool Festival several times since then and are always very popular.
Thanks to Jeff Holt for this video on YouTube
See LightPool Festival in Action
Have you been to any of the Lightpool events in previous years? They’re what make LightPool Festival unique in the UK. Most of the other Festivals of Light are based around installations. It’s amazing FREE fun, right here in Blackpool!
Why don’t you send in your photos? We’ll add them to your gallery of images, find it here.
Just email them to jane@theRabbitPatch.co.uk
Take a look at the 2016 LightPool Festival video –
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