LIVERPOOL Festival Gardens will host a visual spectacle this spring half term when the world-famous Lantern Company brings a brand new, illuminated celebration to the city’s cultural calendar, in partnership with Liverpool City Council and funding from Arts Council England.
Taking place over three evenings – February 18, 19, and 20 (5.30-9pm) – Luminous Landscapes aims to raise environmental issues related to landfill and recycling in a humorous and thought-provoking way, inviting audiences to take up the challenge of reduce, reuse and recycle.
The gardens and woodlands of this city landmark will be transformed into an extraordinary and strange luminous landscape, where what is usually hidden beneath the lake beds and forest floors creep, crawl and belch up to the surface, astonishing, challenging, delighting and horrifying audiences in equal measure.
Audiences will be free to roam the route at their own pace with hand-held lanterns, experiencing a world turned upside down, where micro becomes macro, humans change place with the insects and all experience the natural world from unimaginable new perspectives.
Jo Pocock, artistic director of the Lantern Company, said: “Featuring a strong environmental theme, audiences can expect a luminous, otherworldly journey through a secret woodland and waterway route, revealing pockets of illuminated magic, giant insects, live music and other incredible sights.
“Expect an unforgettable and thought-provoking journey where the night unfolds in astonishing ways for audiences of all ages.”
Community participation and celebration takes a central place in the festival and will engage over a thousand local people through community arts workshops, creating lanterns and luminous accessories to be carried at the event.
Luminous Landscapes comes thanks to the continued support and funding from Liverpool City Council’s Culture Liverpool, Arts Council England and Granada Foundation, as well as donations from the public, after the company was forced to cancel its annual Halloween Lantern Carnival in 2015 due to lack of funds.
Jo added: “We are very grateful for the continued support and funding from Liverpool City Council, Arts Council England and the local community, without which our new event would not be possible. Luminous Landscapes is a really exciting new project for us, and we are delighted to have support from many of the city’s organisations who are putting environmental issues at the top of the agenda”
Assistant mayor and cabinet member for Culture, Tourism and Events, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “The Lantern Parade is hugely popular and I think seeing it at a different time of year and in a new location will bring a whole new, exciting perspective to the event.
“This will be the first time we have used the Festival Gardens for a large-scale activity, and it will be a great indication of the different events we can stage there in the future.
“It’s a fantastic green space and it will be incredibly beautiful to see it lit up for three nights with work created by local people.
“I hope as many people as possible take the opportunity to come to the gardens and see what is set to be a beautiful Luminous Landscape.”
For information on tickets, early-bird packages available, and workshop venues and times, visit www.lanterncompany.co.uk