Light Night Leeds is a night time festival that has been growing since it started in 2005. Showcasing art installations, shows, projections and much more it has become a huge event in Leeds and has been extended to 2 days for 2016! This was actually my first time visiting as previous years have either just passed me by or i’ve been working or away so never knew how good it is!
My Highlight video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L86BzbPP4o8
I made sure I got the best experience this year by visiting on both days and fitting as much as I could in. On the Thursday the main event was the Light Night Parade with street theatre drumming act – Spark! Leading the parade. The atmosphere was great as the parade burst its way through the city centre and thousands lined the route following the spectacle. Spark made the parade and their interactivity with the audience and superb routines kept me running to the front to see more of them!
My Light Night Parade video:
After the parade, some of the major installations were on show tonight so I went exploring the streets of Leeds. Pictures don’t do them justice so there is lots of videos in my playlist here. First, park square was transformed with Apparatus Florius, using light and sound to create a mezmorizing fusion of ropes weaving through the trees.
Walking around Leeds you are greeted with a waterfall projection on the Queens Hotel, Giant dandelions made out of plastic bottles in Merrion Gardens and a magic light up wall you can draw on using water (Waterlight Graffiti).
Friday was even better, another 40 events were happening so starting at Leeds Docks we explored the centre via bus, foot & water taxi! Light Water, Dark Sky was an installation on the water itself where you immerse yourslef in hundreds of pulsating lights while listening to music through your headphones.
We got the water taxi up to Leeds Train station and headed to Trinity Leeds Shopping Centre showing off its arched glass roof with hundreds of L.E.D’s dancing to music. Heading even further north we arrived at the main feature of the festival this year – The Pheonix in the Stone – A projection mapped show on the iconic Civic Hall Building in Millenium Square. My video here:
There was lots of installations in this area of Leeds including Laiki#4 at Leeds City Museum which allows you to interact with the light & sound and a strange but mesmerising show in the CarriageWorks theatre featuring 2 light up cubes:
Leeds Town Hall opened it doors to show Phase Revival & Fireflies, both stunning.
Then it was time to round off the festival by watching Flame Oz fire show. This really had the Leeds crowd going and the kept getting better and better with the show ending in large fireworks being spun around, even the cast had to wear protective goggles and gloves!
Light Night really does show Leeds at its best, with a lot of the cities unique buildings open to the public free of charge to see some brilliant installations and shows. Living in Leeds, it is actually good to go into these iconic buildings I walk past every day and appreciate the beauty of this city. It’s so hard to describe the installations & events as you really need to experience them for yourself. It took me long enough to get to my first Light Night, but I certainly wont miss another!