Crowds Dance In The Rain On An Outstanding Festival Day One posted 23 Sep 2017

Audiences young and old braved sunshine and showers for the opening of Birmingham Weekender 2017 yesterday. 

Commuters were brought to a standstill twice with two amazing performances by the full City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and their phenomenal musical director Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. Rain did not stop Mrs Barbara Nice in getting people up on the dance floor as the Square Dance opened with the Alternative Office Party, which saw our youngest audience member so far bust some moves and culminated in a fantastic conga across the square. Over in Cathedral Square the trees appeared to be talking as part of Tony Oursler's ethereal The Influence Machine, and in a car park near the Barclaycard Arena The Multi-Story Orchestra played a jaw dropping version of Beethoven's Fifth. At Selfridges, late night shoppers were mesmerized by the Clash of Drums preview - if the preview is this good you cannot miss Saturday evening's performance at Eastside City Park (some walk up tickets will be available on a first-come-first-served basis).

Today (Saturday) starts with a parade over over 600 participants, led by a mechanical elephant from the High Street to Victoria Square. The day will bring an whirlwind of dance, street theatre, music and more - download the Culture Cake app so you know what's on where and when!

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