This Bright Land Is Transforming Somerset House Into A Welcoming Wonderland of Cultural Celebration

It’s a celebration of community and togetherness at Somerset House this summer as the venue’s gorgeous outdoor courtyard is taken over by This Bright Land. From August 1 – August 29, a whole host of activities and events will be on offer to stoke hope and optimism among attendees.

This Bright Land will see family-friendly activities for all ages to enjoy, open-air Vogue Balls and Friday night parties to let your hair down, and a 35-metre Observation Wheel hitting the courtyard. Live performances, immersive installations, and pop-up experiences will also be dotting This Bright Land’s schedule. Indulge your senses along the floral pathways of the scented Wonder Garden, presented by Jo Malone London. Or check out the futuristic clubhouse from M·A·C Cosmetics. Not enough for you? There will also be rollicking good times at the Sunday Street Parties with performances, live art, games, workshops and more. We’re getting breathless just trying to mention everything.

The night-time celebrations

The Friday night parties will see leading art collectives and creative initiatives hitting the stage and running the night. Curated nights of performance, sound, and all out fun will highlight London’s diverse cultures and communities. Nights will range from Nine Nights‘ celebration of Black creative talent and performance, to ESEA Sisters‘ performance line-up of women, trans, non-binary, and genderqueer people of East and Southeast Asian heritage, and more.

Oh Annie Oh, who will be performing at This Bright Land
Oh Annie Oh. Courtesy of ESEA Sisters

Saturday nights see open-air Vogue Balls from Vogue Rites. Weekly themed nights will bring some of the most exciting names in the international ballroom scene to Somerset House, competing for trophies and unique prizes. The celebrations of dance, fashion, and music will culminate in the Finale Ball – set to be largest open-air Vogue Ball in UK history.

Performers at a vogue ball presented by Vogue Rites
Courtesy of Vogue Rites

And for when you get peckish?

Black Eats LDN will be providing the food, highlighting the best food from Black-owned businesses across London. And a partnership with Bombay Sapphire will ensure plenty of bright and zesty cocktails to sip on. You can even try your own hand at the cocktail game. A masterclass offers you the chance to master the perfect gin cocktails.

Some food being cooked up by Black Eats LDN
Courtesy of Black Eats LDN. Photo credit @KhrisMorganUK

Aiming to “encourage empathy between different communities and in doing so make a new space for creativity, conversation and collaboration”, This Bright Land engages with underrepresented communities to promote relationship-building. Everything about the event coheres to promote the work of established and grassroots communities of creatives.

It’s all set to be a bright delight – a wonderland of community, togetherness and care for each other. And let’s be real, who can resist an observation wheel for those unmatched heights and views of the London skyline? Unmatched, except maybe for that one other relatively famous observation wheel that London is sort of famous for.

By the way, almost all of it will be free. Everyday during the week it will be free to enter during the day. They recommend you book your free ticket in advance, but you’re also more than welcome to just turn up. Pay-what-you can events in the evenings ensure that anyone can enjoy the programme of events and workshops. The larger events also have a range of ticket prices to ensure This Bright Land remains as accessible as possible.

This Bright Land runs from August 1 – August 29.

Head to their website to find out more, and to grab your tickets.