Light Night gets set to dazzle Christmas in the Capital

As Edinburgh's Christmas prepares to open tomorrow (Friday 20 November) plans for the city's Christmas light switch-on on Sunday are revealed.

Light Night returns to George Street with an all-singing, all-dancing extravaganza not to be missed. This year, singing sensation Susan Boyle will switch on the city's Christmas lights.

On stage, Susan will be joined by an award-winning fundraiser from Cancer Research UK Kids and Teens, Gracie Linn. Gracie was the goalie with Hibernian Football Club’s Under 13 girls’ Team when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia in March this year. She spent several months in isolation and received more than 25 blood transfusions as well as chemotherapy. Now Gracie who celebrates her 11th birthday on December 8 is clear of cancer, back at school and looking forward to celebrating the best Christmas ever with her family.

Edinburgh's Lord Provost, Donald Wilson, said: “Light Night marks the start of Edinburgh’s official countdown to Christmas and as ever, it’s going to provide a spectacular, lively and colourful start to the season.

“Featuring hundreds of local performers, it is the largest free event of its kind in the city and raises much needed funds for charity. It really is so important to celebrate community at this time of year and Light Night does exactly that.

“Please do dress for the weather, take to George Street on Sunday to show your support, and get ready for another magical Christmas in the Capital.”

Susan Boyle commented: “I am thrilled to have been asked to switch on the Edinburgh Christmas lights this year. I have travelled to Edinburgh to see the lights every year so to be in charge of switching them on is a real honour and I'm very excited to be taking part.”

With seven stages set along the length of George Street, this event is all about community. We have 53 school, community and other local groups with an estimated total of 1,250 performers, each performing an act, a dance, a song or a piece of music inspired by Light.

Light Night remains the largest free community event staged in Edinburgh. Dance groups, community choirs, drama clubs and schools from across the city will perform on the theme of LIGHT, each putting their own unique spin on the theme. 

Charlie Wood, director of Underbelly and Edinburgh's Christmas and the Light Night event, said: “This is the third year of our re-imagined Light Night on George Street and we’re so delighted with the relentless and continued enthusiasm of groups from across the City who are so keen to come and sing, dance and perform for the people of Edinburgh. This year, we’re delighted to be joined by the brilliant Susan Boyle, who will be lighting up Edinburgh and honoured to be raising money for Cancer Research UK Kids and Teens, Edinburgh Christmas’s charity partner.”

Selected highlights from across the seven stages include:

  • Siamsoir Dance Academy will grace our stage with their own unique and festive take on traditional Celtic dance moves where Christmas tunes mash up with Irish Dance.
  • The Sick Kids Community Choir was founded to bring together people and staff from all across this much loved and respected Edinburgh provider of care. Be ready to be captivated by this ever-cheerful institution.
  • Edinburgh Ballet School will offer us a graceful set of performances throughout the day featuring an interpretation of Twinkle, Twinkle along with other beautiful performances to songs incorporating ‘Light’.
  • St Mary's Music School, their jazz ensemble will get the crowds swaying with their very own spin on those fab-u-lous Duke Ellington classics.
  • Loud and Proud, will add an extra bit of extra sparkle to the day as they celebrate their 10th anniversary, with a classic a capella festive choral performance. Expect the unexpected.
  • Stenhouse Primary School, over 50 pupils will take to the stage to perform a selection of Gaelic, Gospel and much loved pop songs all on the theme of Light.

The event takes place from 1:30pm on Sunday 22 November with performances from 2pm. Fireworks will be set off at 4:50pm.

Please note that this event is expected to be very busy, so please arrive in plenty of time, travel by public transport if at all possible to avoid congestion in the city centre and dress accordingly. For more details, visit Edinburgh's Christmas

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