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Blackburn Festival of Light 2018

In this newsletter…Artist light commission (deadline for submissions midnight tonight), call out for local lantern artists to join the team, volunteering opportunities, how to join the samba band or the illuminated dance group, dates and venues for community lantern making sessions and opportunities for your group to work with a lantern artist.

The nights are drawing in, the trees are losing their leaves and our thoughts are turning to Blackburn Festival of Light (BFOL). The festival this year takes place on Saturday 15th December and over the coming weeks the festival team (who are based here at The Bureau) will be working with artists, communities and volunteers to create another wonderful light parade for Blackburn.
The festival has grown over the years and is now a fixture in the town’s calendar, bringing people of our different communities and neighbourhoods together to create and celebrate.
There are lots of opportunities to take part this year. You can make lanterns, be part of the samba band, join the community dance team or volunteer to help others participate.
Kerris was on BBC Radio Lancashire this week talking about the festival and you can hear it via Listen Again (starting around 50min).
To whet your appetite, take a look at this short film of some of the highlights and feedback from last year and get this year’s festival date in your diary…
Saturday 15th December 2018 4.30pm – 7.30pm

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There’s still time to apply for the artist residencies (just).
We have 3 residencies going to open call and the deadline is tonight, 6th November, at midnight. The available opportunities are: Large lantern residency; Fire sculpture residency and Illuminated costume residency. We are looking for an artist or artists to collaborate with groups. All commissions to include all fees, materials, travel costs, room hire, installation and CPD session with the Blackburn Festival of Light team of artists.
Find out more and how to apply.

Local Lantern Artists – Join The Team!

We are keen to expand our team of local lantern artists able to deliver community lantern workshops in the run up to the event. There will be a number of dates and locations for workshops, which are yet to be confirmed. If you are interested, please email Leonie with your name, availability, previous experience and a brief statement about why you would like to be involved.
There will be a training session on Sunday 11th November between 10am and 1pm with an opportunity to meet the team of volunteers in the afternoon.

Join The Team Of Volunteers!

Volunteer Session Sunday 11th November 1pm – 4pm

If you are over 18 this is a great opportunity to learn new skills, meet people and make a real difference to the festival and the town. BFOL are holding a volunteer introduction and skills session this Sunday afternoon, when you will meet the team and learn how to make lanterns so you can support artists delivering community workshops. If that’s not for you, then there are other ways you can help out.
To find out more email Leonie.

Samba and Streetband Grooves

Mondays 5.30pm – 7.30pm at The Bureau

Free community workshops for adults and young people from age 14, or age 10 with an accompanying adult.
Develop your drumming experience and learn new grooves to be part of a new Samba Street Band at The Bureau and perform in the parade during the Festival of Light.
Warning, there may be illuminated costumes involved!

Contact Kerris for more details.

Community Illuminated Dance Sessions
Fridays from 5.30pm – 7.30pm at The Bureau

Want to learn some fab moves for the parade? Fancy taking part in an illuminated dance performance at the Festival of Light?
Join Gillian Burns, community dance artist, to create a performance piece at these weekly rehearsals. Dancers and non dancers of all ages are all invited to take part. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Get in touch or just pop in and join in. Wear something that you can move in!

Lantern Making Sessions

Blackburn Market
Saturdays 17th, 24th November and 1st, 8th December
11am – 4pm

The Bureau Centre for the Arts
Sundays 18th, 25th November and 2nd, 9th December
11am – 5pm

Free, but with a suggested donation of £3.
Come and join in a workshop with a professional lantern artist and create a beautiful paper and willow lantern for the parade. Make an individual lantern to take home after the parade or get together with a group to create a giant lantern. Finish in a day or come back each week. It’s up to you!
These sessions are open to all and it’s definitely not compulsory to come with a child!! This is a messy gluey activity, so please wear suitable clothing.

Opportunities for Local Groups

If you are part of a group based in Blackburn, for example Guides, Scouts, a craft group, walking group or support group, and you would like to be part of the parade, there’s an opportunity for you to have a lantern making workshop delivered at your usual meeting venue or at The Bureau.

We have funding from the Big Lottery to enable us to offer subsidised sessions to groups and we may also be looking for groups to work with our commissioned artists very soon!
Contact us for more information.

Light Commission for The Exchange

We are really excited to share the news that, for this year’s Festival of Light, Super Slow Way have commissioned light artist Jen Kagan to work with local young people to create a light installation for the wonderful Cotton Exchange.
We can’t wait to see what they create, all of which will be revealed at the festival on 15th December.

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