All you need to know ahead of new festival Love Light Norwich
PUBLISHED: 10:12 11 February 2020 | UPDATED: 09:37 13 February 2020
From illuminations on the castle to a parade through the city streets, here is all you need to know ahead of the first Love Light Norwich festival.
Organised by Norwich Business Improvement District (BID), supported with public funding from Arts Council England, the event takes place from February 13 to 15 and runs every evening.
What can I expect?
The free, family-friendly event coincides with Valentine's Day, with the theme of love and belonging, and it will embrace the power of art and innovation to encourage wellbeing and community connection.
The city will be shown in a new light and the festival includes an illuminating trail, large-scale projections, extraordinary installations and stunning performances.
It is hoped that it will attract visitors to the city and Norwich BID have brought on artist Alex Rinsler as creative director, who is the co-creator of the annual Lightpool Festival in Blackpool which sees the famous tower and seaside town lit up and features live performances.
Mr Rinsler said: "The Valentine's weekend comes at a time of the year when people feel socially isolated, as well as in love.
"We want to create a festival that promotes inclusion so that everyone can benefit from developing new connections with freely accessible events, all in the impressive setting of Norwich's unique heritage with unparalleled architectural richness."
To celebrate the event, Norwich Market will also be open late until 9pm on February 13 so you can shop for tasty treats whilst enjoying the lights across the city.
What will happen at the Love Light Norwich Parade?
The main event is the Valentine's Parade on Friday, February 14 from 6pm and it will run from Norwich Cathedral to the Forum.
It will feature French street performance company Picto-Facto, who will be bringing their cheeky and captivating figures the Lampadophores, spreading mischief and joy to the city's streets, alongside local arts organisation Tin House and LumiDogs, with pampered pooches parading in light-up costumes.
There will be workshops to create illuminated costumes for your dog, in preparation for the parade, on February 2 from 12pm to 4pm at Eaton Park Cafe and February 9 from 10am to 4pm at the Norfolk Makers Festival at The Forum.
The LumiDogs workshops are free but you need to register by following the Eventbrite links on lovelightnorwich.co.uk
Will there be any performances?
There will be pyrotechnics outside The Forum on February 13 and 14 at 7pm as pioneers of fire theatre Bilbobasso, who hail from France, perform Amor.
Amor is an explosive satire on married life, telling the story of a couple whose tenderness is starting to go sour and the smallest thing can lead to a blow-out.
Norwich rockers The Neutrinos are also performing at The Halls at 7pm, 8pm and 9pm on February 15 and the group have created new show Floodlight especially for the festival and have teamed up with artist Sal Pittman.
The band will lead the audience from the shadows, through candlelight, to full illumination and tickets are free but it is ticketed and you can purchase them at norwichartscentre.co.uk
What artists will be there?
The Festival will transform the city against a backdrop of Norwich's celebrated medieval architecture and landmarks.
There will a Lovebirds projection by Illuminos on Norwich Castle, which tells the timeless tale of two lovebirds who sing and trill in their golden cages.
Watch them escape in a feast of colour and light as you journey with them in spirals and song, before they return to a golden nest for two.
At Norwich Cathedral, the Lighting Up Love projection, by Australian award-winning duo Nick Azidis and Rose Staff, will transform the inside and outside of the building.
The installations are Halo by Illumaphonium in Upper Green, Cathedral Close, featuring 12 sculptures and inviting you to make music, The Seed of Life + Opalescent by Amber Lights at The Garth and The Guntons Building, Norwich University of the Arts, with a kaleidoscope of colours, Happy Heads inflatables by visual artist duo Benoit+Bo in Castle Street and London Street and Chris Plant's Harmonic Portal in Grout's Thoroughfare, with slowly-changing colours and brightness transforming the wall into new landscapes.
How can I take part?
There will be Love Light Labs at OPEN Norwich on February 13 from 12.30pm to 5.30pm and they invite individuals, local businesses and communities to come together to drive positive social change.
Sponsored by Aviva, debates and discussions will shine a light on how innovation in sharing, light, design and health can help bring people together in four separate workshops.
The event will explore opportunities to encourage social inclusion and a better-connected city for all and forms part of a city-wide initiative, led by Aviva, called #NorwichTogether to tackle loneliness.
The workshops are free, but you need to book by following the Eventbrite links on lovelightnorwich.co.uk
Love Light Norwich is sponsored by Norwich City Council, Norfolk County Council, The Forum Trust and Aviva.
You can view the full programme at lovelightnorwich.co.uk