Exactly two years since carnivalites from Bridgwater Carnival lit the night over the Dorset skyline as the opening of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic sailing events in Weymouth, the world famous spectacular Bridgwater squibbing is set to feature in another historical national event.
Celebrating the second anniversary of the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games, a simultaneous squibbing display featuring 40 Bridgwater carnivalites has been revealed as one of the main highlights of a unique Great British Carnivals event taking place in London on Sunday 27 July at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
The event also marks the midway point between the London and Rio Olympics, and the colourful free show will create a breath-taking display of dance, infectious music, performance and costume, featuring international and home grown carnival performers.
For centuries the squibbing display has been a familiar feature at Bridgwater Carnival bringing the town’s Guy Fawkes celebrations to a mesmerising close. Folklore suggests some people visit Bridgwater on carnival night just to witness the squibbing display, as there is no other place throughout the world that stages such an amazing spectacle.
This planned performance in London will be just the second time a simultaneous squibbing display has taken place outside of Bridgwater, with the first being at Weymouth in 2012 when a record breaking 208 carnivalites lined the beach to show squibbing to the watching thousands from all over the world.
Chris Hocking, commercial officer and life member of Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival Committee, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity for us to spread the Bridgwater Carnival word to another part of the country, and we are very proud to have been asked to take part in such a prestigious event.
“It also demonstrates just how highly regarded and respected Bridgwater Carnival is by other carnival institutions throughout the UK, and we can’t wait for the big day so we can show others how special and unique our squibbing is.”
As well as the squibbing display, the event will also host the world premiere of The Carnival of the Animals: a magical twilight crescendo of costumed performers, 300 dancers, giant carnivalesque creatures and extraordinary illumination.
Great British Carnival goers will also see other performances on the day from:-Paraiso – authentic Brazilian samba carnival troupe with eye-catching costumes based in London Rhythms of the City – an infectious fusion of funk, soul, Motown…and samba! Mahogany – artists creating huge costumes, sculptures and choreographies Shademakers – creators of ingenious but beautiful costume-puppets Mandinga Arts – outlandish costume-makers and anarchic performers As well as celebrating the second anniversary of the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony and the mid-way point, Great British Carnival will fill the park with the spirit of Brazil for the day. After the excitement of the World Cup and as we look forward to the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Carnival will strengthen the links between the UK and Brazil.