Pyro experts, an interactive torchlit procession, a 90s rave ensemble and magical metamorphosing horses are just some of the acts visitors to the 2016 Bournemouth Arts By The Sea Festival can enjoy.

An eclectic line-up of performances will be taking place throughout the eight days of the event, now in its sixth year, from Saturday October 8th until October 15th. The festival, which is funded by Arts Council England and Bournemouth Borough Council promises almost 100 events featuring dance, performance art, classical music, theatre, art workshops and fun activities for all the family.

One of the opening weekend’s highlights will be pyro experts Walk The Plank firing up the Triangle, Gardens and beachfront with the Sea of Freaks Torchlit Procession, culminating in The Inferno – a fiery stage featuring brassy 90s rave ensemble Mr Wilsons Second Liners. Walk The Plank is a free ticketed event and has now sold out but you’ll still be able to watch the Torchlit Procession as it makes its way from the Triangle to the seafront.

The internationally acclaimed Compagnie Des Quidams’ metamorphosing horses in Fier A Cheval is set to close the event on October 15th.

Here are just some of the free events not to miss:

1. Jellish by Thingumajig
Legions of giant jellyfish are set to invade the Lower Gardens on Saturday October 8th. Jellish is a performance courtesy of Thingumajig Theatre and will see giant jellyfish puppets paraded after dark. The puppets, measuring 1.5m wide and up to 5m in the air, are illuminated internally from gently changing LED and UV lights which are controlled by a jellyfish technician. On the back of each technician is a sound system with strange and evocative seascape sounds.

2. LED Throwies
Help create an interactive display of light in Bournemouth’s Central Gardens on Saturday October 8th. From 7.30pm to 11pm, families can make LED Throwies (a coloured LED bulb with a mini battery and a magnet) to create a glittering light display.

3. Suddenly Last Summer
View a selection of work from members of the 2016 graduating cohort from Arts University Bournemouth. Open Monday to Thursday from 9am to 5pm, Friday and Saturday from 9am to 4pm at Campus Galleries: The Main Gallery, Northwest Gallery, M Studio Gallery & Library Wall.

4. Luminous Flotilla
The Bourne Stream in the Lower Gardens will be transformed by a fleet of lanterns on Saturday October 8th. Between 6.30pm and midnight, 30 bespoke, laser cut and mini wooden boats will take to the water. This installation will be hand crafted by the critically acclaimed Kazimier Productions at the Invisible Wind Factory who have been busy impressing audiences and the Arts Council England with their unique immersive theatre performances and industrial-style installations.

5. German Wheel Workshops By Acrojou
A spectacular wheel acrobatics, or ‘Rhönrad’, workshop comes to the Waterfront Arena. Over 2 hours, you’ll get the chance to have a go at wheel acrobatics in which the performer executes tricks inside and around a rolling wheel (just like a hamster wheel) using bodyweight, balance, counter-balance and timing to achieve cartwheels, spins, spirals, jumps and inversions. The free ticketed event will see two workshops taking place, on October 8th and 9th between 11am and 1pm or 2.30pm and 4.30pm.

6. The Ball by Wet Picnic
Head to the Waterfront Arena at 8pm on Friday October 14th for The Ball, a “completely immersive, decadent ballroom experience.” The audience will be placed around three sides of the space and at the head of the dance floor is a long table where the family dine. The audience can choose to begin here or meet one of the performers who start in different parts of the town. Together you will prepare for the ball and become part of the performance.

7. Sing and shoutalong with The Little Mermaid
60 Million Postcards will be screening The Little Mermaid on Monday October 10th. The Disney classic will be shown via a larger projector with the soundtrack playing from the venue’s F1 speaker system featuring songs such as Under the Sea, Kiss the Girl and of course, Part of Your World.

Courtesy of the Daily Echo