London’s Culture Days feeds ‘eyes, ears and soul’

Art installations, dance, poetry and music. London’s main drag comes alive Friday to kick off London’s version of a two-day nation-wide cultural celebration.

Culture Days 2017 features free arts events in cities across the nation. In London, the celebration is organized by the London Arts Council. It will take over Dundas Street — closed between Clarence and Rideout streets — Friday and Saturday, followed by London Fringe’s Nuit Blanche.

“It’s a real slice of what’s happening in London from hip hop to dance and art and wacky stuff,” said Mario Circelli, founder and chair of the Jack Richardson London Music Awards who organized the music and dance for London Arts Council.

“I want people to realize we’re taking over three blocks in the downtown and turning it into one giant stage. It should be a non-stop stage experience, while people will be creating art.”

Highlights of Culture Days ­include:

• Creation of a large interactive mural with London artist James Kirkpatrick;

• Original dance performance by choreographer Ruth Douthwright that fuses techniques from around the world;

• Ill at Will Dance Crew’s mash-up of hip hop and visual art moment;

• Erik Mandawe, London Art Council’s first artist in residence, will co-curate with local filmmaker and media artist Darr Sands a performance art installation and exhibit featuring several other ­artists;

• Tom Cull, London’s poet laureate, will curate an entire block of “live and experimental” multi-media poetic performances;

• There will be 14 storefront art installations along Dundas, including paintings, photography, sculpture and projections;

• Large scale projections to light up building;

• Live music and dance performances on a stage at the corner of Richmond and Dundas featuring artists including Whoop Szo (Friday at 10 p.m.), Kings College Chamber Choir alternating with the Junction Beat Percussion project with Joel Jacobs, as lights are projected on buildings between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Friday.

The music and dance continues Saturday with The Wack MCs at 11a.m.; Hubrid Monster at 2p.m.; The Gamble Party and Dance band at 3:30p.m.

Other performers Friday and Saturday include TreeTop collective, Casper, Kehmak, DJ Fresh, CZz and this year’s Jack Richardson London Music Award Hip Hop Artist of the Year, JR Fillion.

Visit the website, , for full details of London’s Culture Days activities.

Circelli said there will be “lots of eye candy” for visitors with the various arts represented.

“We’re showcasing the talent that is in London, feeding your eyes and ears and soul.”

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What:Culture Days, Dundas Street, featuring music, dance, art and interactive events

Where: Dundas Street, between Clarence and Rideout streets.

When: Friday, 6-11 p.m.; Saturday starting at 10 a.m.

Admission: Free

Read more news of London on our city guide.

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