Nocturne for Climate Action

Posted on October 19th, 2019
by Nocturne

Nocturne is always SO inspired by K'jipuktuk/Halifax, and this couldn't have been more true than yesterday during the climate strike that brought out an estimated 10,000 protestors due to the lack of action on climate change.


We want our audience, artists, partners, staff, and volunteers to feel empowered to take whatever action they can against climate change. And we wanted to take a moment to share what Nocturne is doing to make the annual festival more sustainable as well as call attention to our current and past artists for their efforts in highlighting this important topic!


  • Reducing the festival programming waste by purchasing items that can be reused year after year, including signage, volunteer gear, and more!
  • Hosting a ‘Plan Your Night’ workshop at The Tare Shop on Tuesday, October 15th that includes tips on being environmentally conscious while attending the festival. RSVP here!
  • Increasing our marketing and communications about being environmentally friendly while attending Nocturne, such as this blog post and our “Tips to Have the Best Nocturne Ever.”
  • Partnering with Kate Pepler (Blue Loop) to present a Certification Program that encourages businesses (specifically cafes and restaurants this year) to opt in to 1 of 4 tiers that challenge them to reduce their environmental impact during Nocturne. To participate or get more information, email [email protected].


In past years, our talented artists have presented projects that focused on the changing climate and our ongoing impact to the environment. Check out a few of their works here:

Curated by Raven Davis


Image: Topher & Rae Studios

Concrete Gesture
was a performance that spoke to the labour of Indigenous peoples and their allies who are on the front lines across this continent protecting the land from exploitation and devastation.

In recent years construction sites have over taken Halifax’s downtown core. Construction zones are public spaces where waste accumulates; construction by-products, marking tape, bits of wires and wood, as well as food packaging, paper cups and plastic lids add up to form clusters of garbage seemingly ignored by the construction companies and passersby.

For their performance, Carrie walked around the city and picked up garbage around construction sites, cleaning up after those who neglected to do so. A small gesture in a concrete city, but rooted in care and concern for Mother Earth.

2017 - VANISH
Curated by anna sprague & Emily Lawrence


Image: Kylee Nunn Photography

This project consisted of a series of fanciful harbour and ocean paintings in black and white ink. The theme of the paintings was sea creatures and life forms that are largely imagined. These mer-folk and aquatic beings, whether related to story or imagination, did not last. Even if we have encountered them before, we can’t hold all these stories; they fade, or vanish, with the tides of our own aging and time. The more critical concerns of the project were with actual loss of species and ocean life forms vanishing from the planet, which seems more urgent and overrides the loss of the imagined species.


Image: Kylee Nunn Photography

Buildings are being torn down. Buildings are being built up. Neighbourhoods are shifting from east to west, north to south, and back again. Restaurants, bars, retail, and businesses open in one area, and close in another. Preservationists are concerned with the city retaining its identity. Futurists are concerned there isn’t enough here to retain a motivated, but shrinking population. "Monument To Ephemerality" was an ephemeral monument of Halifax in 2017. It was a monument to what was and what will be. It was built from the debris of the past (steel rebar), stood in the present (Nocturne), and, ultimately, vanished and was recycled into the structures of multiple city construction projects.


We would love to hear your thoughts on how Nocturne can improve our efforts to make the festival more environmentally friendly! Get in touch with our Executive Director at [email protected] or our Communications Director at [email protected] to chat!