Saturday, October 29, 2016

Night of Dread 2016

Toronto's 17th annual fearful night of pageantry comes to life death at the Dufferin Grove Park community celebration. Presented by Clay & Paper Theatre, participants wear large masks, watch fire spinners with flames on sticks and dance with the booming beat of the drum band. In lieu of masks you could paint your face as a skeleton and/or wear their suggested dress: Black, white and dreadful.

The park is on Dufferin Street, just across from the Dufferin Mall and the place is full of trees showing their fall colours. Along a slope following a walkway is the 'Valley of Remembrance' with a shrine garden.

"Participants gather for the parade in Dufferin Grove Park from 4 to 6pm where Clay & Paper Theatre puppets and masks are made available for revelers to wear. After the hour-long procession, with its towering puppets, fire spinners and an assortment of marching bands, all participants return to the park where they are treated to a theatrical spectacle showdown with the “Fear of the Year” for 2016."

From 4 to 6 pm people began to gather near the rink and listened to the music of the Candy Apple Jazz Band. At 6 pm the parade assembled and the Night of Dread parade headed out on the hour long journey of frightful fun. Returning to the park they took part in the Fear of the Year Scenario, enjoyed a good Mockery (post scenario events) and listened to more live music.

The night was family friendly and there were plenty of children dressed in Halloween costumes joining in the parade. "Torontonians are invited to call on, mock and banish their private and collective fears through parade and pageantry, music and masquerade, dance and a devilishly good party. NIGHT OF DREAD incorporates international folk and theatrical traditions, drawing inspiration from festivals of death and remembrance around the world."

Later in the night there was a Small Fears bonfire, a Death Dancers waltz and the eating of Bread of the Dead, which is a traditional Pan de Muerto baked in the the park's bake ovens. A boisterous closing dance party finished off the night.

See more Dread after the jump.

Valley of Remembrances

Fear of the Year

The Candy Apple Jazz Band

A flame spinner

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