Canal carnival in Haggy… buskers not boats

Ellen Blane competing in Buskival busker contest on "Haggerston Riviera" Regent's Canal London 230814 © david.altheer@gmail

A WEEK before the Notting Hill Carnival, Hackney gets its own free festival. If you thought this was about last year’s excessively popular canal carnival, well, sorry: it’s about, uhm, buskers.

Twenty of the urban adornments will perform on six stages at four venues on the Haggerston Riviera.

Riviera? Yep, the once-dread row of industrial slums on the Regent’s Canal near Kingsland Road. As classy –  OK, hipster – venues have set up there, the district, above, has been rebranded.

busker (supplied pic)
Air time: busker reaches for the sky (supplied pic)
Competing busker  (supplied pic)
Competitor (supplied pic)

The one-day buskerfest at the Proud Archivist, TripSpace, Waterhouse and Tonkotsu East, below, is entitled the Riviera Buskival. (Smell the money: those marketing people again.)

Obviously, there’s a high risk of the curse of the Underground, Streets of London, Smoke on the Water, or Blowin’ in the Wind assailing your ears but, hey, there might also be a standout performance by an embryonic star, because the acts have been vetted.

They will include music acrobatics, right, theatre and dance. Which also means a good chance there’ll be none of those supposed statues who can be seen wobbling unconvincingly in city squares around Europe.

The best busker will win a gig at the 100 Club in Soho and other prizes. The real winners will be the restaurants.

David Altheer 190814

* Riviera Buskival, “Haggerston Riviera”, Regent’s Canal just north of Orsman Road N1 5QJ, Sat  23 August 2014, noon-11pm. Free

* Backstory: Buskers blowing in the Vortex

Waterhouse resto in Orsman Rd Hoxton Hackney London 230814 © david.altheer@gmail
Riviera reverie: Waterhouse restaurant and, below, Tonkotsu East a few hundred metres west. Main picture shows contestant Ellen Blane strumming and singing by the canal on the day

Tonkotsu East Arch 334 1a Dunston St HaGGERSTON E8 4EB 010314 ©

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

This site welcomes fair comments, including the critical. They may be edited for grammatical, legal or taste reasons, or for shortening. In the unlikely event that anything defamatory is posted, the sender’s details may have to be divulged. (Under UK law, this applies to any comment/discussion forum, eg, Twitter.) RSS feed link is at top right. Twitter: @lovingdalston Publicists, amateur and professional, should read Also relevant may be the note at the end of Photographs © David Altheer unless otherwise stated and apart from supplied pictures