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Loop the Loop to kick off the North West's Olympic celebrations

  • Date: 16 May 2012
  • Area: North
Whirling Sufi dancer Ziya Azazi

Looping the Loop. Credit: Ziya Azazi

People of all ages from across the North West are being invited to take an Olympic-inspired cultural journey from Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester to The Quays in Salford this Saturday, 19 May. The free event will see the area around Old Trafford and The Quays transformed - linking culture and sport and London 2012 to the North West as part of the cultural Olympiad programme in the region. 

Looping the Loop marks the start of London 2012 Games Time in the North West and coincides with the beginning of the Olympic Torch Relay in the UK. The event, which runs from 12.30-5pm, begins at Old Trafford and visitors will then be invited to loop the loop from there to The Quays to experience unique street art, performance and dance.

This extraordinary programme offers something new and different that has never been seen before at The Quays. Community groups from across Salford and Trafford will be showcasing their creativity and will be joined by local, regional and international artists. There will be art and sport interactive activities and plenty of opportunities for visitors to get involved.

Performances and events taking place during the day include the Blaze Boom Bike Band, Turkish Sufi dancing by Ziya Azazi, All About Us and a variety of London 2012 inspired art, digital events, sport and Big Dance 2012.

The day will come to an amazing climax when one of the UK's major event producers and creative forces, Walk the Plank, will lead a world class spectacle, featuring aerialists, pyro, boats and music, which will be focused around the water and the Lowry foot bridge. The finale will also include the unveiling of an Olympic-inspired artwork by Matt English which will remain in place on the bridge for the duration of the Games. 

Speaking about the event, Debbi Lander, the 2012 Creative Programmer for the North West, said: 'The Games is a fantastic opportunity to get people across the UK involved in activities they have never tried or experienced before. Looping the Loop will give people across the North West the chance to be part of London 2012 and mark the start of Games Time in a unique way. This is an excellent example of an event for everyone, placing culture at the heart of our Games.'

Looping the Loop has been supported with an award of nearly £95,000 through our National Lottery funded Grants for the arts scheme. It is also funded by the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA). The event is led by Lets Go Global (Trafford Council with Salford City Council), The Quays Cultural Partnership, Marketing Manchester, London 2012 Look Programme, Walk the Plank and a commissioning partnership with the Cultural Olympiad, North West.

To find out more about Looping the Loop and for details of the programme for the day and how you can take part visit the event website. Looping the Loop is just one of many free arts and cultural activities happening across the North West to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Full details of all the events can be found on our regional 2012 website nwfor2012.com.