The second annual Glowfair will take place June 19th and 20th across 10 city blocks on Bank Street from Slater to James.
The festival, launched in 2014 by the Bank Street Business Improvement Area (BIA), is a collaborative effort by all merchants and members of the BIA. Each block will feature a different theme with completely surprising, mesmerising and fantastic free activities. Themes include a phosphorescent enchanted forest, circus, Kids’ Zone, Pinball Wizard skateboarding park, and a Glow Zone.
There are also two stages set up during the festival, one for live music and one for DJs. With that in mind here are Ottawa Showbox’s top 5 musical acts to catch in chronological order:
The Strain (June 19, 7 p.m., Main Stage) — The electro-pop group from Wakefield, QC, is made up of two siblings, their cousin, and a childhood friend. Their pleasing dance music will get you moving like no one is watching. Who knows, you may even channel your inner Mick Jagger. Have a listen below and prepare yourself to be “Tearing Up the Streets”.
DJ VILIFY (June 19, 10 p.m., DJ Stage) — Originally from Montreal, but now performing out of Berlin, Germany, DJ VILIFY is a master of many styles. She refuses to be cornered into one genre of DJ. Heavy bass may be her first love, but she does not shy away from producing producing house, dancehall, hip-hop and more. Check out this thumping and bumping hour of dancehall and get ready to dance close with someone.
Jokers of the Scene (June 19, 11:30 p.m., DJ Stage) — Toronto’s techno-synth master will take you into the wee hours of the night with their non-stop creativity. And how will they be playing so late, you ask? Once the early birds in the city go to bed and noise restrictions come into place at 11:30 p.m., festival-goers can use a Bluetooth-enabled headset so they can hear the music and dance until 2 a.m. This is perfect for Jokers, as their new album is described as music “crafted for modern listening from the analog echoes of cybernetic dreams… headphone music made to move bodies, at once familiar and confounding fresh.”
The PepTides (June 20, 8 pm, Main Stage) — Ottawa’s very own eclectic The PepTides draw from funk, soul, jazz and electronic influences. They gel them all together for high energy sets with layered vocals, thanks to five vocalists, and infectious rhythms that get your moving. The band is as fun and funky musically as they are visually, usually dressed in vibrant and neon colours and outfits. This will be more than just a musical set, their will be choreography, visual effects, and the overwhelming feeling of a party. Get yourself in the mood and listen to their gleeful track “I Love You Made in China”.
Lowell (June 20, 9:10 p.m., Main Stage) — Probably the highlight of the festival is Toronto’s Lowell. If you want to see energetic stage presence and an explosive dedication to live sets, then you cannot miss Lowell. On top of all that, her music addresses very serious subjects like sexual abuse, rape, abortion, women’s rights, the lack of LGBTQ rights in our society, and ignorance towards homosexuality. But fear not, she is not preachy nor grandstanding—she just covers very serious subjects over fun and accessible pop melodies. Lowell is not to be missed, we guarantee it! Watch a live performance of “Cloud 69” at a faux-birthday she through herself in Toronto, and the super fun video for “The Bells” below.