MERGE Bankside Festival 2015 - Broke in London

MERGE Bankside Festival 2015

MERGE Festival is set for another year of wonders and delights

MERGE Bankside, the month-long free arts festival, is back for its fifth year (check out last year’s Merge festival). The festival sees a collection of talented artists take inspiration from the rich heritage and contemporary culture of the area to create some fascinating, interactive art installations. This year is particularly special with lasers controlled by your brain, a magical wishing well and a road crossing that creates the illusion of being in another world.

Merge Highlights

Marcus Lyall and Rob Thomas, the pair behind the visual effects for The Chemical Brothers and Metallica live shows have created ‘On Your Wavelength’. This is a large – scale immersive light and sound installation which promises to impress by immersing the reader in an audio-visual experience generated by their own brainwaves. Cue EEG headsets, lasers and sound effects to create a mind-boggling display of digital artwork.

Dubbed as “mad scientists”, the crazy duo Bompas and Parr invite you to experience the ‘Bioluminescent Chamber of Wishes’ – an interactive installation inspired by the lost wells and grottos of London’s Bankside. Collaborating with microbiologist Dr. Simon Park, the seemingly mystical properties of bioluminescent sea water are harnessed to create the glowing pool inside a magical grotto. By tossing a unique wishing token into the water, guests interact with the luminescence created by the splash, and keep a lasting memory of this experience with a laser-triggered photograph. The display alone is enough to impress!

MERGE Bankside Festival 2015

From Bompas and Parr Sensed Presence

Colourful Crossings sees one of the main arteries in Bankside, Southwark Street, transformed into an outdoor gallery with a series of on-street public artworks to bring pedestrian crossings to life. Award winning photographer Morgan Silk will be creating a large-scale anamorphic scene in which a hidden world will appear and disappear on the road’s surface depending on the vantage point of the spectator. Just one word of advice, though; don’t take too long crossing the road!

MERGE Bankside Festival 2015

Morgan Silk

Blackfriars road is also set be transformed as ‘Time to be Late’ takes over. The daily commute has never been so hilarious with a series of energetic and comedic scenes taking place at bus stops and on buses along Blackfriars Road. Performers include Award Winning Natural Theatre Company and a unique cabaret show from Scotty the Blue Bunny who (if you’ve not heard of him) is a man sized, spandex-clad blue rabbit. If that doesn’t get you down to SE1, what will?

Caravan Theatre and Riverside Stage

Finally, the Caravan Theatre and Riverside Stage will be returning to the river walkway outside Tate Modern. Caravan Theatre brings unique theatre productions to intimate four-person audiences and performers this year include Sammy Kissin, Natalie Smith and Croft and Pearce. The Riverside Stage will feature a range of musical talent, showcasing the best of new British music and song writing. This year, bands include the winner of the BBC2 Folk Awards ‘Stick in the Wheel’ and the adventurous seven-piece ‘Mishaped Pearls’, nominated for Best Song and Folk Singer in The Independent Music Awards 2014.

MERGE Bankside Festival 2015

Expect great live music at the MERGE Bankside Festival

Follow Merge Festival and Visit Bankside on Twitter for further updates.

What: MERGE Festival 2015
Where: Bankside, London
When: 18th September – 19th October 2014
Cost: FREE