Next month, the streets of Leeds will undergo a mesmerising transformation as the captivating spectacle of Light Night Leeds returns. This two-night cultural extravaganza, taking place on October 12 and 13, will illuminate some of the city’s most iconic buildings, streets, and spaces with an engaging programme featuring over 50 art installations.

Now in its 19th year, the theme for this year’s event will be “Future Dreaming,” drawing inspiration from LEEDS 2023. It will showcase a collection of pieces from around the world, envisioning how Leeds and the wider world might appear in the future.

Among the anticipated highlights is the extraordinary Evanescent, hosted by Leeds Dock and The Royal Armouries, conceived by the Australian design studio Atelier Sisu. Towering at over eight metres, this remarkable artwork invites visitors to stroll amidst a series of large, illuminated, and vibrant bubbles, accompanied by an enchanting soundscape.

Elsewhere, the iconic white facade of Leeds Civic Hall will once again serve as the canvas for one of Light Night’s most beloved projections. Theatre of Illumination, created by artist Will Simpson, was originally commissioned for the 2014 event. This mesmerising digital display features a series of 3D optical illusions and projection mapping, complemented by an exhilarating soundtrack that transports visitors through time and space.

At Trinity Leeds, Yorkshire Circus will present Portals, featuring a unique acrobatic performance inside an illuminated wheel.

In Park Square, a magical installation co-produced with the British Library will transport visitors back in time to the ancient forest of Leodis. Here, they can amble through a tranquil glade adorned with glowing flowers, fairies, and mystical stone circles. This piece, titled Enchanted Glade, draws inspiration from the British Library’s upcoming exhibition “Fantasy: Realms of Imagination” and showcases the work of several artists.

Collaborating with LEEDS 2023 and the Empire of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Light Night will also feature works by two Netherlands-based artists – Studio Toer and Jonas Vorwerk. Additionally, they will team up with the creative studio NOVAK for a distinctive activation of “Making A Stand” in City Square.

At The Tetley, artists Harriet Lumby and Alan Hayes will unveil “Emergence,” a new large-scale sculpture incorporating dynamic light and an original soundscape by the NYX: electronic drone choir. This installation is sponsored by Aire Park.

Light Night consistently draws over 100,000 people to the city centre over its two-night run. The installations are spread across various zones in the city centre, many of which are generously sponsored by local businesses and organisations.

The Light Night team has also been diligent in ensuring this year’s event is as energy-efficient as possible. They have worked closely with artists to promote the use of energy-efficient equipment in their installations.

Councillor Jonathan Pryor, Leeds City Council’s deputy leader and executive member for economy, culture and education, said: “The stunning spectacle of Light Night is always one of the most anticipated occasions in our city’s events calendar, bringing tens of thousands of people together to enjoy a unique and unforgettable experience.

“It also exemplifies the very best of culture in Leeds, celebrating the power of the arts to engage and inspire while reinventing some of the city’s most celebrated and best-loved locations.

“Light Night also plays a huge part in supporting our local businesses and economy, generating important footfall and inward investment. As we continue to celebrate our landmark LEEDS 2023 Year of Culture, I’m sure this year’s event will be one to remember.”

Additionally, a number of events will take place outside the city centre in areas such as Harehills, Chapeltown, Meanwood, and Burley.

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