(5.19) The WaterFire season kicks off Friday with all the bells and whistles. Sponsored by Providence College to celebrate their 100th anniversary.

Prior to lighting, the Providence College performance group I Cantori, directed by TJ Harper, will perform on Waterplace Basin stage. Performance begins at 7:15pm.

On tap: A full complement of fire dancers, including Spogga! Starry, Starry Night at Memorial Park, and Pierrot (Michael Grando) will be throwing carnations.

Those events draw crowds to the Canal Walk end of the route, but head down to the other end at the Waterplace Park Basin for a beautiful and refreshing cocktail (or mock) with Little Bitte Artisanal Cocktails. I love these gals, plus this gets you away from the crowds — often on a stool where you can view the braziers and watch the passing parade.

Tonight’s music program includes: Mike Figgis, Philip Glass, and, at 8:35pm, a ‘Nessun Dorma’ singalong with Luciano Pavarotti! (Kidding, don’t even try.) Followed later by Mamadou Diabate, the Nashville Mandolin Trio, Ry Cooder, Back, Springsteen, Dead Can Dance, and more.

You can follow @WaterFire Music on Twitter for live Now Playing updates during the event.

Ignition from 8:30pm to 12:30am, WaterFire, Friday, May 19, downtown

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