Wednesday afternoon I headed out to the Halifax International Busker Festival, one of Halifax’s most exciting annual events. Buskers, as folks around here call it, is an 11-day festival of street performances held on the waterfront and hosts a wide range of acts, from musicians to gymnasts and magicians to comedians. I’ve been to the festival many times over the years and have enjoyed some excellent performances unlike any I’ve found elsewhere.
I met up with my sister Ilea, her friend Kat, Allison, Andrew, Sara, and brought April along for the events, so I had a nice group of people to take in the festivities with. After meeting with everyone, utilizing the infamous tongue-wave (01, 02) as a landmark, we dispersed to see some acts.
We started with Duo Tomlys, a silly trampoline and acrobatics duo that Ilea described as “the girl being bounced here madly expressing her love for the oblivious and idiotic guy. Too much sap for me.” I wasn’t struck by sap, but wasn’t drawn in by the act all that much.
Next were the marvelous Les Walkyries from Montreal. We were all impressing by their flamboyant explosion of whips, weapons, acrobatics, fire and attractive women. April was so enticed that my camera ended up with over 40 photos from their performance alone. We were all very smitten. They were definitely the highlight of this year’s performances for me.
Another act we enjoyed was Senmaru, a kimono-wearing demon of balancing. He spun and balanced many objects in impressive ways, declaring the cost of each breakable item before beginning. After each stunt he would exclaim, in his delightful accent, “It’s amazing!” He was quite an amusing character.
We also caught Alakazam, Chalkmaster Dave, and Silver Elvis, rounding out an afternoon we all enjoyed tremendously. The festival is wrapping up now, but I recommend checking it out next year if you have the chance.
After Buskers I visited Gwen before we both went with her mother to a concert by The Halifax String Quartet in The Music Room. I had never been to the venue before and was very impressed with the atmosphere and acoustics. It was an excellent performance, with pieces from Corelli, Dvorak, Britten, and Vivaldi. Through the magic of the blogosphere, I know I was not alone in thinking highly of the night’s performance. Gwen’s sister is the cellist of the quartet, so I was able to meet her after the performance for the first time, which was nice. Delicious food and drinks after the show closed out a tiring but enchanting day.