Brief Encounter to be an array of song, projections and processions

More details have emerged about what’s planned for the Brief Encounter festival to signal the start of Autumn in Preston.

Building on last year’s Lancashire Encounter there is to be a blitz of arts, song, projections and walking attractions for a four-hour period on Saturday 23 September.

Preston City Council says it wants to use the event as a stepping stone into the biennial Encounter festival – to give a flavour of what they have planned in 2018.

The story of Lancashire’s landscapes is to be projected onto the front of the Town Hall by the team behind many of this year’s City of Culture events in Hull.

As the projection plays choirs from across Lancashire will join in song to echo down Lancaster Road throughout the Saturday evening.

Elsewhere a scaled-back version of the torchlight procession takes place featuring groups from Blackpool, Preston and Burnley and includes the landscape giant.

The giant will walk the streets, illuminated with other parts of the procession, starting in Winckley Square, heading up Cannon Street, Fishergate and down Cheapside into the Flag Market.

On the Flag Market itself, a number of interactive artworks will be installed including an Illumaphonium, which allows visitors to play a song, and also a spectacular umbrella tree.

A giant globe will take pictures of those looking at it and project them across itself.

A host of workshops and classes are to take place throughout the Saturday evening – all free to attend – with venues due to be confirmed soon.

Everything will be free to attend and Tim Joel, head of events at the city council, says it will ‘whet the appetite’.

He told Blog Preston: “The emphasis is on making sure this is brief, it’s a flavour of what we’re looking to have in 2018.

“A key thing for this year is that we’re working to improve the arts and cultural infrastructure in not just Preston but Lancashire as a whole.

“We’re working with community arts groups from Burnley to Blackpool so they can get involved and be a part of this, as they have been doing.

“Preston has the space, size and facilities to host these kinds of events – and showcase what Lancashire has to offer.”

Funding for the event is coming from the Arts Council, the University of Central Lancashire, Community Gateway and the city council itself.

Cabinet member for culture and leisure, Councillor Peter Kelly, said: “For a taste of local arts and culture join us for Brief Encounter this September.

“The evening will be packed with lots of exciting things to see, do and experience. A landscape Giant, an umbrella tree, a mini procession and a chance to play an illuminated instrument made up of two hundred chime bars. There will also be workshops to try your hand at – screen printing, dance, theatre and singing with a choir.

“You’ll have to wait until 2018 for the full Lancashire Encounter weekend to return, but the evening of 23rd September will be spectacular!”

All events are due to take place from 6 pm to 10 pm on Saturday, with detailed timings to be confirmed for the procession and the other events. More details on Brief Encounter can be found on the Guild City website.

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