St Paul’s Carnival is going online for 2020, with online events programmed from June 20 through to July 4.
Spirit Up! United at Home will bring the community ethos of St Paul’s Carnival to people’s homes across Bristol and beyond.
The 2020 carnival was cancelled in March after it became clear that public gatherings would not be safe due to the coronavirus pandemic.
However, carnival organisers have been working hard during lockdown to bring a celebration of African-Caribbean culture to everyone who love the unity and inspiration that the carnival brings to Bristol each year.
The Spirit Up! United at Home programme will start on June 20 and finish on July 4 – what would have been the day of the carnival – with a lineup of DJs and artists of carnivals gone by, as well as new talent.
The programme is focused on supporting artists who have lost work due to the coronavirus pandemic, with St Paul’s Carnival executive director, LaToyah McAllister-Jones, saying: “We are really excited to be working with many of our much-loved local community artists to put on a two-week programme of carnival-inspired art and performance.
“Our motivation behind this online series of events is to show support for our artist community who have been hit so hard by the reality of the pandemic.
“It is really important for us to show solidarity and support where we can. We also want to keep our community spirit up; we all need positive encouragement right now.”
Full details for this year’s online celebration will be released in mid-June 2020, but July 4’s online carnival is looking to be will be a mix of pre-recorded and live-streamed performances.
There will be poetry, music, storytelling, arts and craft activities for the family and lively debate sessions.
St Paul’s Carnival is also launching a 2020 Crowdfunder campaign, having raised money via its first Crowdfunder in 2019.
The fundraising campaign will enable the carnival to continue work within the local community and in education, as well as host additional events.
“Covid-19 has stopped play this year; as an arts and culture organisaton, we are committed to supporting both local and national public health policy,” says St Paul’s Carnival board director Dr Aylwin Yafele
“We are also thinking ahead to 2021 and what we have to do to come back bigger and better,” says Aylwin.
“It’s no secret that every year we have to fundraise 50 per cent of the half a million total cost to put Carnival on each year. Carnival’s history, cultural significance and vibrancy are too important for Bristol to lose.
“We want our community and the city to get behind carnival. We ask everyone to give what you can and back your carnival.”
Find out more at www.stpaulscarnival.net
Main photo: St Paul’s Carnival
Read more: St Paul’s Carnival 2020 cancelled