Christmas Lights Switch-On 2022 ushers in the festive season

Image by Graham Whitmore

Thu 27 Oct 2022

Watch as Derby is illuminated for the festive season as the Christmas Lights Switch-On event returns on Saturday 12 November.

Join us from 3.30 pm on Corporation Street, outside the Council House, for a stage show showcasing local talent alongside our headline act The Overtones. Enjoy the Derby Lantern Parade from 4pm, and more free entertainment before the light switch-on at 6pm along with the fireworks finale.

Corporation Street will be closed to traffic during the event so everyone can get a better view! Smooth Radio’s breakfast show presenter Gareth Evans will present the show, alongside some unmissable live acts. The stage show will also be attended by a BSL interpreter from Theatre Sign from 4pm onwards, who previously signed the Darley Park Weekender.

 The event is supported by media partner Smooth Radio and Derby’s Season of Light Festival.

Councillor Jonathan Smale, Cabinet Member for Finance, Digital and Culture said:

We’re thrilled to see the Christmas Light Switch-On return to bring in the magical festive season. With live music, dance performances and a pantomime sneak peek, there will be fantastic outdoor entertainment for everyone to enjoy. Be sure to stop by and join in the festivities, we can’t wait to see everyone there!

Kicking off the stage show is Derby-based party band Cassette Roulette, a 5-piece band made up of full-time professional musicians and two of the industry's best female vocalists. They'll be performing a terrific mix of classic and modern tunes to get the audience in the Christmas mood, after appearing at last year’s event.

Following on from this, performing on stage are members of the Adele Francesca Performance Academy, with a fusion of dance styles including Street Dance, Afrobeatz, Hip Hop, House and Contemporary. The West End community choir “The Local Vocals” will then perform energetic and uplifting rock and pop songs by Stevie Wonder, The Foo Fighters and Elton John. They adore Christmas so join them in some foot-stomping, hand-clapping, and sing-along Christmas music. Known for his unique rap styles, and catchy hooks, local Grime artist KayGee will also be performing ahead of the arrival of the Parade.

Starting at 4pm on St Peters Cross Derby Lantern Parade, led by city-based South Asian arts organisation Surtal Arts, will make its way from along St Peters Street, Corn Market, and the Market Place before going down Tennent Street. More than 500 people of all ages and cultures are expected to join in the parade which will be headed by renowned drummers Dhol Frequency and Chinese Dragon dance performed by DANS Chinese Dance Troup. Be prepared to be enchanted as these talented performers and beautiful lanterns illuminate a path through Derby city centre and spread joy as we come together as ‘one’ for this city-wide celebration of Derby’s culture and local talent.

The performers will be joined by school pupils, community groups and members of the public donning traditional biodegradable Diwali and Chinese lanterns that they have made in workshops across the city organised by Surtal Arts as part of Derby Season of Light Festival. You’ll also have the chance to catch a preview of the main man himself, Father Christmas, who will feature in the parade alongside award-winning pantomime Dame, Morgan Brind, who will be taking a starring role this year in Aladdin at Derby Arena.

After spreading festive cheer throughout the city, the parade will make its way to St Peter Hilton Gardens opposite the Council House at 4.50pm, to be welcomed by the cheering audience. Following on from this, the Dhol Frequency drummers up the tempo and will take to the stage to perform, followed on by the stars of this year’s panto – Aladdin.

Our headliners, The Overtones are a British Multi-Platinum selling group with ‘5 top ten records, over a million album sales & 11 sell-out UK tours’. Over the last decade they have been a household name having appeared on countless TV and radio shows including Dancing on Ice, This Morning, BBC Breakfast and ITV’s Lorraine. During their early career, they established their own home décor company; allowing them to practice their sound while working after a talent scout overheard them singing in London's West End. They drew inspiration from artists like The Ink Spots, The Drifters, and Michael Bublé. The talent scout invited them to an audition with Warner Music executives, where the quintet won a five-album deal and the title "Take That of doo wop" after impressing the record company. Their debut album Good Ol’ Fashioned Love is a mixture of ‘50s/’60s nostalgia pop classics and self-penned tunes, including their first single Gambling Man; which was well received by audiences. They’re a must see at this year’s Christmas Lights Switch-On.

The entire programme of events and timings can be found on the event page; don’t forget to let us know you’re coming on the Facebook event page where we will also be posting updates.

Make Derby top of your Christmas list with the many events and activities, as well as all the usual delightful gems of shopping, places to eat and drink, attractions to visit and experiences to enjoy. Get into the festive spirit and see for yourself what’s going on, on the Festive Derby website.  

While you explore the festive season in Derby, use the MiPermit app to pay for your parking stay. Or why not join thousands who park each month at Parksafe, with staff onsite 24/7, ‘the safest car park in the world’ can be found in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter. You can also find a full list of Council car parks here.