25 September 2011

The Grand Grotesque Parade (and more...)

On Saturday evening, a mournful rendition of "Oh we do like to be beside the seaside" resounded on the breeze in Bournemouth town. Crowds flocked to the Lower Gardens to witness the 'Grand Grotesque Parade', an artistic reinterpretation of the once-forgotten Edwardian 'Grand Grotesque Carnival', as part of Light Night from the six-week Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival.

After publishing photos earlier this month of its zombie-ish preview, I was kindly invited to report and take photos backstage of the event. The preparation and costumes were a fantastic feat, and the parade itself was a spectacle to the eyes. 

However, the Grand Grotesque Parade was not the only unusual event happening that day. During the daytime, the Lower Gardens were filled with plenty of mad yet wonderful goings-on, including the world's smallest vaudeville travelling show, and a seemingly spontaneous "static tour" of Bournemouth. The weather was exceptionally beautiful that day too, which made it all the better.

For more photos of Saturday's fantastic events, see my Facebook album. And if you live in or around the Bournemouth area, you can expect a piece on the Grand Grotesque Parade in the next issue of the BHbeat newspaper.

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