News  ·  26 | 07 | 2018

Countdown to the Festival

With just a few days to go before the start of Locarno71 some Festival venues will be lit up earlier, with an eagerly awaited double advance screening on Monday 30 and Tuesday 31 July. The lights for this year’s first screenings will be switched on in Piazza Grande, at the GranRex and – as early as Friday 27 July – in the spaces of the #LocarnoExperience.

Pre-Festival night has become an unmissable part of the whole event, and the title of this year’s film needs no introduction: Grease. Celebrating the 40th anniversary of a cult movie that has always had worldwide audiences tapping their feet, on Tuesday 31 July at 9.30 PM Piazza Grande will be slicking back its hair and donning a leather jacket to host the frenzied moves of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. Back in 1978 they became two of the most contagiously irresistible big screen dancing partners of all times, thanks to a musical which has held an unassailable place in the hearts of moviegoers ever since. It could not exist a better way to enter into the magic spirit of Piazza Grande than doing it following the rock ’n’ roll rhythm and the atmosphere of young loves? Drive-ins, funfairs and roaring engines will light up the start of the 71st edition of the Locarno Festival with an iconic evening offered to the public by Ascona­–Locarno Tourism, in partnership with EventMore.

But that won’t be the last big night of Locarno71 – in fact it won’t even be the first! Already on Monday 30 July at 8.30 PM another Festival venue, the GranRex Leopard Club, will be hosting a major film event, with the world premiere screening of Mario Botta. Oltre lo spazio. The documentary on the noted architect from Canton Ticino, produced and directed by Loretta Dalpozzo and Michèle Volontè, will be the main feature in a unique evening at the GranRex, with a special admission charge of 12 Swiss francs made possible thanks to the support of UBS. The film, screening just 48 hours before Locarno71 gets under way, is a visual portrait of a new challenge faced by the tireless Swiss architect: responding to a commission to build a mosque in China has led him to find the essence of his materials and inspired him to profound professional and personal reflections.

In the run-up to the big event, besides the Pre-Festival and special screenings, the first bright lights of the party atmosphere this summer will once again be switched on for the off-Festival events of the #LocarnoExperience. There are two key venues setting the mood at Locarno71: laRotonda, the Festival village, and Locarno Garden la Mobiliare. The first place to get into the swing of the Locarno Festival’s nightlife will be laRotonda, where the spotlights will come on as early as Friday 27 July, from 6 PM to 3 AM, as the stage is set for 17 long evenings of the #LocarnoExperience with live concerts, DJ mixes, a range of tempting food & beverage options and much more. Featured groups during the first weekend include Drunky Funk, Balkan Lovers and Train to Roots, who will perform on the stage of the Grand Hotel Swisscom. In the heart of the old city, 24h later, on July 28, Locarno Garden la Mobiliare will light up with live music and all the necessary for feeling and experiencing its unique atmosphere.

The 71st Locarno Festival will take place from 1 to 11 August 2018.