GDIF 2023 | London’s free, annual outdoor performing arts festival 25 August-10 September 2023
1 - 10 September | 8pm | Limmo Peninsula, Canning Town, Royal Docks (3 min walk from Canning Town station: Bow Creek - City Island exit) Exit the station and turn left.
Duration: 2hours 30mins
What to Expect: Participate | Sensory spectacle | Speech free
GDIF and our partners have taken the decision to cancel the following GDIF 2022 events following the announcement of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II yesterday evening:
• Charon by Peter Hudson with Building 180 and Les Machines de l’Île in Royal Docks
• Relaxerette by Arjan Kruidhof, Lân Fan Taal & Explore the North in Rathbone Market
• Roll Play by Simple Cypher in Globe Town Market Square
• Unfurl by Air Giants and Air Bubs by Bubble Club in Bethnal Green Gardens
• Dancing City across the Canary Wharf Estate
As a creative organisation with a civic focus, we work with dozens of public and private sector partners each year and these decisions to cancel have been taken jointly with them at this time of national mourning.
In accordance with the wishes of the Royal Household and in line with ongoing theatre performances across the country, we are continuing with the planned presentation of more reflective theatre productions. Performances of Peaceophobia at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park Multi-Storey Car Park and Final Farewell at Island Gardens will therefore go ahead as planned.
We wish to express our condolences to the Royal Family and all those affected by Her Majesty’s passing and are sorry for any disappointment caused by these cancellations at this time of shared sadness.
The last rite of passage on the way to the afterlife.
Monumental and mesmerising, Charon is a gigantic 32ft high rotating zoetrope with posed human skeletons mounted on its inner edge…
As dusk falls, take a journey along the River Lea, through an immersive dreamscape, arriving at this spectacular kinetic artwork which tells the story of the mythological ferryman, who in Greek legend rowed the souls of the recently departed across the river Styx.
Originally created for Burning Man, this extraordinary installation will be embedded in a theatrical world created by A Right/Left Project with d&b Audiotechnik, bringing the spirit ofNevada’s legendary festival to East London for the first time.
Warning: this performance contains strobe and flashing lights
How do I get to Charon?
When arriving at Canning Town station, take the exit on the left (Bow Creek – City Island).
Exit the station and turn left. The Charon site is around a 3 minute walk.
Click here to view the Photo Route.
Can I bring my own food and drink?
There will be food and drink stalls on site. Please note no outside food/drink will be allowed in. Bag checks will be in place.
Naan-o-Peyaz: Delicious authentic Afghan cuisine.
Husk Brewing: Locally made pale ales on tap (+ wines/soft drinks)
The Flippin Bean: Coffee cart selling hot drinks, sweet snacks, and iced lattes
Can I bring my pet?
Unfortunately due to health and safety regulations pets are not allowed at GDIF events, with the exception of registered service animals.
Can I arrive later than 8pm?
Yes – gates will open at 8pm but you can come any time before last entry at 10pm and stay for as little or as long as you like. The performance is ‘rolling’ and does not have a fixed start time.
More information on Charon
How to attend
Charon is free to attend.
There is level access across site.
On-site walking distances
Respite and Access Areas
This is a large site, with tables and chairs available in our food and beverage area.
An accessible toilet will be available on site.
Blue badge parking
Rathbone St. Car Park
Access drop-off point
Canning Town Station
Available to download in the ‘Where to Find it’ section below.
For Access questions, contact email@example.com // 07899 893 935
Other audience questions, contact our Box Office: firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow GDIF on social media or sign up to our newsletter to be the first to hear about Charon.
Strobe Free performances 4 & 5 September, 7-8pm
Touch tour 7 September, 7-8pm
Check out our Access Information page for GDIF 2022 to learn more about our access practices.
Raised in Ben Lomond, CA and based in San Francisco, Peter Hudson, aka “Hudzo” self-proclaims, “I am the director of the shortest (in time), yet tallest (in size) 3D animation shorts, realized as life-size, 3D stroboscopic zoetropes.” Hudzo channels his technical and set-design expertise, curiosity, and creative passion into life-size 3D stroboscopic zoetropes. Hudson has spent 30 years in the world of stage and set design, working with the San Francisco Opera, Ballet, TV and film. In 2000, Hudson began creating his own larger scale sculptural installations, debuting his first major installation, Playa Swimmers, at Burning Man. In 2001, his work Possession garnered international attention when it was featured on the cover of the Italian edition of Rolling Stone magazine. Hudson’s work continued to evolve into 6 stroboscopic zoetropes: Sisyphish, Deeper, Homouroboros, Tantalus, Charon, and his most recent piece, Eternal Return.
Stephen Dobbie and Colin Nightingale (A Right/Left Project)
Sound Design and Composition
Stephen Dobbie & Toby Young
Audio System Design and engineering
Andrew Horsburgh & Wayne Powell (d&b Audiotechnik)
Fabrication of Barrel Lanterns
Martin West (101 Outdoor Arts)
Charon is supported by the Royal Docks Team and Arts Council England with thanks to Transport for London, Les Machines de l’île, d&b Audiotechnik, Zomer van Antwerpen, Festival Paris L’été and Hellfest.
Where to find it
Limmo Peninsula, Canning Town, Royal Docks
Nearest station: Canning Town station (Bow Creek – City Island exit)
Click here to view the Photo Route.