It’s been hugely popular in London and now StreetFest is coming to Leeds this May to show off a different side to the city’s cultural scene.
Bayo Alaba started StreetFest in Shoreditch in 2008 as a way of creating a platform for the unsung heroes of live urban arts in and around the local area. After a decade of successful events that have welcomed the likes of Loyle Carner, Professor Green and Ghostpoet, it is now hitting the road and coming to Leeds for the first time ever. Each event they do is curated to the place they’re taking over, so get down to Canal Mills on Saturday 11th May 2019 for a one-off 12-hour festival that will show off a side of our city you don’t normally get to see.
“We liked Leeds because we could see a lot of similarities between Leeds and London,” Bayo told us. “It’s got a really strong dance community, it’s got a really strong music community, it’s got a strong skate community. We just saw a lot of really good elements of the creative scene that kind of happened in London and we thought ‘look there’s a lot of good people there why don’t we sort of pull them together in a StreetFest format?’ It was just us acknowledging and respecting all the good things that are happening in Leeds.”
StreetFest is split into two parts, day and night, and if you head down during the afternoon you can enjoy a laid back, family-friendly atmosphere where creativity reigns. Pay a visit to the Dance Stage and you’ll see dance battles, shows and demonstrations hosted by MC B-Girl SunSun and Leeds-based DJ collective Fresh Jive who will soundtrack the day’s events. The stage is curated by B.Supreme and will welcome Explosive UK, one of the best dance collectives in the country, to Leeds while a trio of international judges, including B-Girl Candy B, dish out their own critiques.
As the dancers strut their stuff, there will be a host of top artists creating new works right in front of your eyes. PaintFreaks are bringing together 25 of the best street and graffiti artists, painters and illustrators from Leeds and beyond. Local legend and ArtOfficial owner Bretski will be showing off his incredible graffiti talents, alongside the likes of Cortisol Kid, Hyrograff and Veno, all of whom will be creating large scale canvases and murals around the festival site.
If you love extreme sports, head over to the 32-foot half pipe, where you can watch in awe as a pro-amateur Mini-Ramp Jam curated by Learn to Skateboard takes place. Hosted by Ben Powell, professionals like Ben Grove, Daryl Dominguez and Tom Moatti will be competing against each other, as amateurs show off their skills too, with prizes to be won thanks to Welcome Skate Store. And all of this just scratches the surface of what’s on offer throughout the day – you can expect street barbers, live tattooing, retailers and bars as well as a street food quarter featuring some of best vendors in Leeds.
From 7pm, there will be a presentation for all the winners of the skating and dancing competitions, followed by a night of live music. MC Paz is your host and they have a pair of massive headliners – Foreign Beggars are one of the most successful British hip-hop acts of the 21st century and DJ Semtex has been one of the most influential hip-hop DJs for over 20 years. They’ll be joined by resident DJs from local nights Musicology and License to Jungle, as well as live PAs by Leeds artists Flame Griller, Budrat Records and Defenders of Style.
StreetFest is your opportunity to discover that counterculture spirit that is often found in the underground, but is now being given the platform and attention it deserves with a massive day of celebration at Canal Mills. So go on, buy your tickets below…
StreetFest comes to Canal Mills on Saturday 11th May 2019. Tickets are £10 each or £20 for a family of four.
To buy tickets for this event please visit the events page: StreetFest Leeds tickets from Skiddle.
Ticket sales by Skiddle