Night of Festivals took to the High Street of Hounslow this weekend (25 -26 June) for the second year, building on the popular reception the ArtReach event achieved in 2015.
A live music stage in Bell Square hosted incredible performances from diverse musicians, both local and from farther afield, drawing huge crowds from passers-by. 4x4 Bhangra created immediate impact, opening the proceedings and getting everyone into the carnival spirit at 10am. Bollywood Brass Band played the popularised songs of Bollywood films that at one stage caused a horde to run down the High Street and join in the dancing to their favourite Bollywood songs! Hounslow Soul Band proved themselves a younger generation of musicians that the Borough can be proud of, whilst another local band, Amigos, played a mix of Reggae, tempting the sun to join them and their homegrown crowd.
At 3pm on Saturday 25th, a touching tribute was paid to MP Jo Cox. With Members of Parliament, Ruth Cadbury and Seema Malhotra, in attendance the crowds gathered to celebrate Jo’s life and the values of freedom, democracy and peace she so strongly stood for.
Lively and high quality carnival processions ran throughout both days, featuring community participants who trained with our partners at Mandinga Arts and with expert coaching from choreographer Ella Mesma. Whilst parades focused on the High Street, particularly adventurous animal characters escaped to promenade in the shopping centre!
A big thanks to our partners and the many individuals, participants and volunteers, who invested in making Night of Festivals Hounslow such a spectacular success - Inspire Hounslow, Cultural Community Solutions, London Borough of Hounslow, Heathrow Community Fund, Feltham Arts, Mandinga Arts, Treaty Shopping Centre, London Contemporary Theatre, Hounslow Arts Centre and Stage Right Productions.
ArtReach Director David Hill, said "With the sun shining, crowds out in numbers, a great lineup of musicians, bands and carnival artists, and enthusiastic and energetic local community performers, our second Night of Festivals Hounslow event was an experience not to be missed. It was great to see such a diverse range of people and ages, all with smiles on their faces enjoying street arts together - despite the doom and gloom and disruption to community cohesion caused by BREXIT."
We look forward to Night of Festivals Hounslow 2017!