ALL THE FUN OF THE FEST; Free arts event will boast 600 activities.
Byline: Steve Bradley
BIRMINGHAM is preparing itself for the 15th Artsfest, with around 600 free events and performances promising to attract thousands of revellers.
The annual event, the UK's biggest free arts festival, will celebrate and showcase West Midlands talent from September 7 to 9. Outdoor venues, such as Centenary, Chamberlain and Victoria Squares and New Street, will host much of the festival, with indoor city centre venues and the mac in Cannon Hill Park Cannon Hill Park (grid reference SP065835) is a park located in south Birmingham, England.
Its main vehicular entrance is in Edgbaston, opposite the Edgbaston Cricket Ground, but the park and the Midlands Arts Centre are across the river in Moseley. also playing their part.
Asian dance, 3D projections and a 'Rootless Forest' are among the highlights of Artsfest 2012, organised by the city council in conjunction with arts organisations and volunteers.
Artsfest will be launched on Friday September 7 in Centenary Square with Mandala mandala (mŭn`dələ), [Skt.,=circular, round] a concentric diagram having spiritual and ritual significance in Hindu and Buddhist Tantrism. , Sanskrit for 'circle', a free outdoor performance fusing international and British Asian music and dance with spectacular 3D digital projections that will illuminate the Town Hall.
Mandala is also one of the closing events of the 12-week London 2012 Festival, which has taken place throughout the UK in celebration of the Olympics and which included the premiere in Birmingham of Stockhausen's airborne opera Mittwoch aus Licht Licht (Light), subtitled "The Seven Days of the Week," is a cycle of seven operas composed by Karlheinz Stockhausen which, in total, lasts over 29 hours. Origin
The project, originally titled Hikari .
Throughout the weekend the unique 'Rootless Forest' will be seen travelling through the city's canals. Weighing 15 tonnes, with 100 trees planted along a 16-metre canal barge, the project will allow passers-by to hear recordings made by military families and UK Afghan communities in Birmingham exploring themes of homecoming and relocation.
Live music throughout the weekend will includes rap, folk, punk, blues, gospel, jazz, samba and soul, with Birmingham Opera Company Birmingham Opera Company is a professional opera company based in the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham, England, that specialises in innovative and avant-garde productions of the operatic repertoire, often in unusual venues. and Birmingham Royal Ballet The Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB) is one of the UK's foremost ballet companies, based at the Birmingham Hippodrome in Birmingham, where it enjoys custom-built facilities such as the Jerwood Centre for the Prevention and Treatment of Dance Injuries and the also among the performers on the Saturday.
Council leader Sir Albert Bore said Artsfest would be a "fitting end to a summer of sporting achievement and cultural entertainment".
More details is available at www.artsfest.org.uk
Colourful: The Off Our Trolley event last year. In fine voice: The Birmingham Opera Company performed in the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery last year.