Lights On Stratford

WE’RE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE THAT THE 5TH ANNUAL LIGHTS ON STRATFORD THEME IS REIMAGINE AND OUR WINTER FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS IS SCHEDULED FOR DECEMBER 13 2024 – JANUARY 19 2025, THURSDAYS – SUNDAYS FROM 5PM TO 10PM.

2024/25 ANNOUNCEMENTS

Now entering its 5th year, the multi award-winning Lights On Stratford annual winter festival, managed by Destination Stratford, will once again transform Stratford’s heritage downtown and park system with luminous art and interactive light installations.

The Lights On Stratford 2024/25 theme is REIMAGINE – to have a new idea about the way something should be.

And the first major announcement for this winter’s light art installations has not one, but two main installations being hosted at the start of the Light Trail in Market Square!

EMERGENCE

Introducing the award-winning EMERGENCE by This is Loop, the collaborative artistic partnership of artists Harriet Lumby and Alan Hayes based in the UK.

We are thrilled to be bringing Emergence to Stratford this winter. This represents not only the Canadian debut for Emergence but also the first time we have exhibited any of our artworks in Canada,” said Alan Hayes, Lead Artist of This is Loop.

‘Emergence’ is a place for contemplation. A sanctum within which to consider the dynamic interplay between order and chaos and the momentous role this plays in systems, life, the self and the entire universe.

The inside of the individual mirrored nodes of the installation offers surprising and awe-inspiring visual illusions that also culminate in an overall combined effect when viewed from a short distance. Each section is carefully constructed to create an optical illusion inside the unit creating a complete sphere of light when viewed from close by that morph into a giant grid of light when viewed from a short distance. This enables distinct experiences for the viewer ranging from collective to intimate depending on location.

With reflective surfaces completely covering all its facets Emergence takes on the surrounding environment providing new ways of perceiving a previously familiar space. The structure consists of 75 large mirror units covered on all surfaces with a mirror finish arranged into a cylindrical pavilion style structure with three entrances, these entrances are all wheelchair accessible.

Emergence
Photo credit: Alan Hayes

Four lines of individually addressable LED’s run around the outer end of each unit creating a square making a total of approximately 14,000 pixels on the entire structure. These LED’s are visible from inside and outside and display a constantly evolving and mesmerising program of highly complex light patterns choreographed to the accompanying audio track.

This is Loop collaborated with the incredible ‘NYX: Electronic Drone Choir’ to create the choral, tribal-feeling soundscape for Emergence to which the lighting is programmed.

STARGATE

The second light art installation for Market Square is STARGATE.

We’re so thrilled to be a part of Lights On Stratford this year! It will be the Canadian premiere for Stargate, and we can’t wait to share this amazing projection sculpture at one of our favourite festivals,” said Jay Tettamanti, a Canadian artist and the award-winning innovative force behind Chalk River Labs, a Melbourne-based creative studio.

Stargate
Photo credit: Downtown Grand Rapids Inc.

Stargate features a 12ft square encompassing a circular ring, ingeniously designed to usher viewers on an awe-inspiring journey through the cosmos. This sculptural marvel employs projection mapping to wrap the entire structure with mesmerising visuals that can be appreciated from any vantage point. Viewers are encouraged to climb into the central ring, serving as both a meditative space and a source of breathtaking photo opportunities, creating interaction and shared experiences among spectators. Hypnotic visuals create an otherworldly portal where the audience is transported to the realm of the stars while standing firmly on Earth’s soil.

MORE LIGHT ART INSTALLATION ANNOUNCEMENTS COMING SOON!

LIGHTS ON STRATFORD MANIFESTO 

  • We bring light and joy to Stratford’s public spaces.
  • We are free to the public and accessible for everyone to participate.
  • We are a cultural anchor tenant that enables additional events and experiences.
  • We celebrate and embrace winter.
  • We help grow a vibrant year-round visitor economy for the region.
  • We strive to continually reduce our environmental footprint.
  • We improve the quality of life within our community.

Stratford is home to some of the world’s best artists, lighting designers, props builders and creative minds. Lights On Stratford harnesses this precious resource of local talent, crafting a truly unique experience that can’t be found anywhere else.

Come see Stratford in a different light!

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Were you not able to attend the 2020, 2021, 2022 or 2023 winter festivals? Here are some highlight videos:

SPONSORS & VOLUNTEERS

This festival is not possible without Stratford’s amazing community support. THANK YOU! Interested in sponsorship opportunities for the 2024/25 5th annual festival? Visit the Become A Sponsor page for more details.

FOUNDING PARTNERS

Destination Stratford
City of Stratford
investStratford
Downtown Stratford BIA

2024/25 IN-KIND SUPPORTERS

Stratford Festival
The Rutherford Group
Stratford Crane Rental Ltd
Bespoke Audio Visual

2024/25 SILVER SPONSORS

Neumeister Motors
A.J. Braun
Rheo Thompson Candies
The Arden Park Hotel

2024/25 BRONZE SPONSORS

Festival City Glass
Little Big Creative
Mornington Communications
Uniac Insurance

2024/25 COMMUNITY SPONSORS

Famme & Co.
White Balmer Shoes
Wightman
jiffylube
MacLeods Scottish Shop
Excalibur Insurance
J.W. Kelly's Electric
Home & Company

GOVERNMENT SUPPORT

Funded by FedDev
This project is funded in part by the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
Ontario
This event has been financially assisted by Experience Ontario, a program of the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Gaming.

CONTACT

Festival Director

Zac Gribble

Email Zac for media enquiries, tourism and festival-related questions.

General Manager

Kaileigh Krysztofiak

Email Kaileigh for operational questions.

Sponsorship Manager

Lindsey Martchenko

Email Lindsey for corporate sponsor opportunities.