Urban Moves International Dance Festival

This July, the third Urban Moves, an international dance festival with a difference returns to Manchester and Bury, Friday 23 – Sunday 25 July, with an outstanding line- up of dance from the UK and Europe.

Urban Moves has put together three days of professional, contemporary dance performed outdoors, against the architectural backdrop of the city.

Twenty companies from the UK and Europe will perform in variety of venues:  Castlefield, St Ann’s Square, Exchange Square, Piccadilly Gardens and Piccadilly railway station.

The weekend’s highlights include: Beau Geste from France – prepare to be amazed when Transports Exceptionnels brings to life the ultimate children’ s fantasy – a duet between a dancer and a giant mechanical digger!

Etant Donne from France,  Aspecto’s shop window in The Triangle comes to life with naughty antics, as dancers mercilessly send up the word of fashion and the hard sell in La Vitrine.

Dancing in the air, from Circo Delicio from Spain performing daring aerial feats in walls and in the air and UK based Gravity and Levity with Re-Flex.

A journey back in time  – local company Resonance Dance perform Forgotten Ghosts, an Urban Moves new commission, a taste of romance on the platforms and escalators of Piccadilly Station.

The Bicycle Ballet, a 30 minute dance performance, celebrating the dance that is cycling, will take place on Sunday 25 in Castlefield, Manchester. See bicycles dance in a performance reminiscent of Busby Berkeley’s stunning synchronized film choreography, illustrating the highs and lows of city cycling: the sheer joy of swerving downhill on a bike, the wind behind you and the sun on your face, tempered by the gritty reality of urban cycling. The performance is funded by Manchester City Council as part of the Cultural Olympiad open weekend

For performance times and a full programme visit www.urbanmovesfestival.co.uk


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Manchester Literature Festival 2010 brings literary gems to the city

The UK’s most innovative literature festival reveals that Orange Prize-winning author Lionel Shriver will launch its fifth edition on 14 October. The packed programme features celebrated writers such as Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy and former children’s laureate Michael Rosen, as well as some specially commissioned new work including the inaugural Manchester Sermon to be delivered by Jeanette Winterson at Manchester Cathedral on 21 October. Nobel Prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney will close the Festival on 25 October.

60 events with outstanding writers spread across 12 days, Manchester Literature Festival 2010 continues to develop its three main strands – READ INDEPENDENT FREEPLAY – as well as featuring new projects linking up with other arts organisations around the city. Since 2006 the Festival has staged a highly innovative series of events around the city in a variety of different locations including Manchester Cathedral, the gothic splendour of Manchester Town Hall, Manchester Art Gallery and Chetham’s School of Music.

History, from the turbulent court of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II to the cloisters of a renaissance nunnery, is brought to life at this year’s festival with renowned historical novelists and historians Sarah Dunant and Alison Weir. Best-selling author and creator of the Sharpe novels, Bernard Cornwell will be making his only UK appearance to talk about his latest novel, The Fort set in the American War of Independence.

In her anniversary year, the work of Elizabeth Gaskell will be explored through a literary coach tour taking in the recently restored Gaskell House, where she penned many of her works as well as visiting The Gaskell Memorial Tower and finishing with afternoon tea in Knutsford, the inspiration for Cranford. BBC TV Producer Sue Birtwistle and scriptwriter Susie Conklin will also launch the Cranford Companion while this year the ever-popular BBC Writersroom features Cranford scriptwriter Heidi Thomas.

Award-winning TV writer and producer Paul Abbott and Patron of Manchester Literature Festival said this week, “I am delighted to be a patron of such a ground-breaking festival that brings writers of international repute to the city. Since the festival began, it has not only nurtured emerging local talent, but has also provided these new writers with a valuable showcase for their work, which is so important in today’s competitive market.”

Other patrons of Manchester Literature Festival confirmed this year are Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, broadcaster and anchor of BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour Jenni Murray, broadcaster and journalist Miranda Sawyer, and highly-esteemed poet and publisher Michael Schmidt.

Other confirmed festival highlights are:

Carol Ann Duffy & John Sampson

17 October The Whitworth Art Gallery

Carol Ann Duffy together with the multi-talented musician John Sampson present a special family poetry event with music.

Amanda Craig & Michele Roberts

20 October, Waterstone’s

Two of the UK’s foremost women writers will be discussing their latest works. Amanda Craig’s Hearts and Minds is a thrilling and thoroughly contemporary tale about the invisible lives of immigrants.  Michele Roberts short story collection Mud: Stories of Sex and Love, takes the reader to nineteenth century Venice, 1970s England, modern-day France and beyond, exploring women’s desires, memory, grief, love and betrayal.

Caryl Phillips

22 October, MMU

Novelist and Yale University professor Caryl Phillips will talk about his latest novel In the Falling Snow.

Women and Crime Fiction with Val McDermid & Sophie Hannah

22 October, Whitworth Art Gallery

Two of our most popular crime writers discuss gender roles in crime fiction, female protagonists (on either side of the law) and the ongoing debate about women as authors and originators of crime fiction.

Poetry continues to be an important component of the festival with performances from Fleur Adcock, Daljit Nagra, Pascale Petite, CK Williams and Desert Island Poems with Michael Schmidt & John McAuliffe at Chetham’s.

There will also be a healthy spread of literature in translation events, featuring leading writers from China, Spain, Norway, the Czech Republic and Morocco.

The hugely popular Manchester Blog Awards will take place once again in association with partners Manchester Digital Development Agency and Arts Council England.  Details of how to enter will be available on the Manchester Literature Festival website.

Manchester Literature Festival also features a series of events especially for children and families including: Children’s Bookshow with Michael Rosen, a Moomin storytelling event with Tove Jannson’s niece Sophia Jansson, in association with NICE festival, and a puppetry and music show, Strange Stones, exploring the life of Mary Anning, the unsung heroine of 19th century palaeontology.

There are a number of trailblazer events for the Festival this year including Postcards from Manchester as part of The Manchester Weekender at venues across the city, 1 – 3 October 2010.

visit http://www.manchesterliteraturefestival.co.uk

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The Manchester Weekender

Forty-eight hours of art, culture, music, film, food, festivals, literature, walks, politics, poetry, photography, theatre and spectacle all wrapped up into a single weekend.

The Manchester Weekender is a weekend-long snapshot of some of the best of Manchester’s art and culture. From 1-3 October 2010, The Manchester Weekender stages a series of one-off, intimate events that sum up the city, pairing international artists, musicians, festivals and writers with some of the city’s most beautiful settings. And it does this for one weekend only – forty-eight hours of some of the most unusual cultural experiences found anywhere within the UK.

Timed to mark the launch of Abandon Normal Devices (AND) and Recorders: Rafael Lozano-Hemmer at Manchester Art Gallery, The Manchester Weekender features the following highlights and with more to be announced:

AND Festival launch. After its smash-hit inaugural year in Liverpool last Autumn, this year’s Abandon Normal Devices comes to Manchester. A festival of new cinema and digital culture, it includes the UK premiere of Turner Prize winning artist Gillian Wearing’s first feature-length film, Self Made. New commissions from a clutch of internationally renowned artists, filmmakers and cultural provocateurs includes Phil Collins in a continuation of his critically acclaimed work Marxism Today. Vacuum packed and vertically suspended volunteers feature in artist Laurence Malstaff’s latest live performance while temporary outdoor cinemas pop up across the city. Midnight Mass from New York drag artist Peaches Christ will encourage bad cinema and even worse behaviour!

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer at Manchester Art GallRafael Lozano-Hemmerery. A major new exhibition of interactive digital artworks by Mexican-Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, including the world premiere of a large-scale installation People on People a co-commission with AND festival and at least four specially adapted interactive artworks that have never been shown publicly in England before, including the seminal Pulse Room, the artist’s contribution to the Mexican Pavilion for the Venice Biennale 2007.

Manchester by water. A family boat party that connects the Manchester Ship Canal with the River Irwell; that puts food by one of the Northwest’s top chefs, Robert Owen Brown, on the menu; that links up one of Salford’s finest pubs, the Mark Addy, with two of Manchester finest museums (MOSI and the People’s History Museum); and that takes you from one city to its sister – Manchester to Salford – finishing up at one of the UK’s top ten architectural sights: Daniel Libeskind’s Imperial War Museum North.

Krysko & Kashiwagi. A one-off gig, that’s part performance art and part club night, all taking place in the distinctly unusual setting of The Whitworth Art Gallery. DJ Matthew Krysko (The Warehouse Project/Sankeys/Tribal Gathering) and the award winning performance artist Naomi Kashiwagi use the Victorian gallery as the backdrop for a new collaborative work that combines electronic music with wind-up gramophones, and 70 year-old shellac records with the latest in digital DJ technology.

Guestrant. Out of the suburbs, one of Manchester’s best kept pub-and-dining secrets runs its famously fabulous Guestrant, in a secret location. Electrik is the bar in Chorlton run by Electric Chair/Electric Elephant DJ duo Luke Cowdrey and Justin Crawford. The concept sees a talented local chef visit the bar to cook a surprise three-course meal for one night only. Intimate, unusual and communal, each Guestrant is a chance to sample food by top name chefs and get-to-know-your-neighbours.

‘Close Up’ featuring Jonathan Franzen. The celebrated American novelist Jonathan Franzen heads to the Whitworth Art Gallery to read from his latest novel, Freedom, as part of an ‘in conversation’ event with DJ/writer Dave Haslam.

The Land Between Us. The Land Between Us brings historic and contemporary art together on equal terms to engage with today’s notions of landscape and identity. Works by artists including Nikhil Chopra, Olafur Eliasson, Cyprien Gaillard and Larissa Sansour and Rachel Whiteread, come together with others from The Whitworth Art Gallery’s extensive historic collection, from William Holman Hunt to Samuel Palmer and J.M.W. Turner. It will be the first time that the Whitworth has shown all 50 Turners in its collection at the same time.

Creative Manchester Map.  A specially commissioned creative map of Manchester, designed by the artist-activist organisation Manchester Design Corporation with Laura Mansfield, the map plots project spaces, temporary, artist-led and mainstream galleries, contemporary arts organisations, artists’ studios, independent publications and curatorial groups – all those shadowy, often unknown agencies whose collective might provides much of Manchester’s creative capital. Walking tours all weekend take in not just art and culture but the cafes, bars and festivals that run simultaneously during the Weekender – the perfect way to enjoy the city’s hard-to-find and underground arts scene. The map coincides with the launch of Creative Tourist’s new iPhone app. – a guide to the art and culture of Manchester.

Urban wandering. From a sensory tour where families get to taste, hear, smell, see and touch Manchester to unusual creative activities ending in an urban picnic, and from psychogeography and parkour tour to the hidden museums collections and artefacts held in the city’s museums, galleries and archives. This series of tours explore Manchester with intelligence, wit, creativity and in some cases athletic prowess.

Postcards from Manchester. Don’t just visit Manchester – imagine it. As part of Manchester Literature Festival, the acclaimed and award winning poets Mandy Coe and John Siddique will be at Manchester Museum writing and helping visitors to write, poetry postcards, a unique way to capture the sights, sounds and smells of the city.

Hidden Manchester. A guided walk created and led by Manchester’s most popular guide, the broadcaster and historian Jonathan Schofield, especially for the Manchester Weekender. Schofield leads a very special, secret tour to one of the city’s most spectacular, but rarely seen by the public, buildings.

Beating Wing Orchestra at Imperial War Museum North. Best known for their sell-out performances at Manchester International Festival, Beating Wing Orchestra brings together artists from across Manchester’s musical spectrum, and from communities as diverse as Kurdistan and Cameroon, Bangladesh and Brazil, into joyful and life-affirming performances.

Black electronica. Contact Theatre hosts a three-day music, dance and arts festival that focuses on the influence of black music within the UK. Launching as part of the Manchester Weekender, Friday includes an evening of black electronica, while Saturday features a live dance link-up with New York.

Participating individuals, organisations and festivalsThe AND Festival, Beating Wing Orchestra, Castlefield Gallery, Chinese Arts Centre, Clarion Cycling Club, Contact Theatre, Cornerhouse, CUBE, Dave Haslam, Electriks, Family Friendly Film Festival, Imperial War Museum North, John Rylands Library, Jonathan Schofield, The Lowry, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester Comedy Festival, Manchester Design Corporation, Manchester Food & Drink Festival, Manchester Jazz Festival, Manchester Literature Festival, The Manchester Museum, Manchester Science Festival, The Mark Addy, MOSI, NICE Festival, The People’s History Museum, Robert Owen Brown, Studiomama, Un-convention, Whitworth Art Gallery, 24:7 Theatre Festival.


The Manchester Weekender is organised by Manchester Museums Consortium and Creative Tourist.

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Industrial Revolutionaries: People who shaped the Modern World

“The eyes of the working classes are now fully opened, they begin to cry: Our St. Petersburg is at Preston!” Karl Marx, 1854

Curators at The Harris in Preston are busy putting together a fantastic exhibition which looks at the people in Preston who helped shape the world we live in today.

Industrial Revolutionaries opens 26 June until 6 November 2010

Employee worker relations, child labour, alcohol and the need for temperance, impending elections with surprise results, penal reform, and economic success for our manufacturing industries; the very issues that concern us in 2010 were preoccupying the people of Preston 150 years ago. People in Preston created a new industrial world and then fought to redress the problems of inequality caused by industrialisation through radical social reform and political activism. Preston is a microcosm for understanding the North West of England’s industrial pioneers and their ideas; ideas that shaped the modern world.

Lock-out and strike cartoon 1853-54 (courtesy Lancashire Record Office)

Teetotal teapot - Preston is the birthplace of teetotalism where Joseph Livesey in 1832 started his Temperance Movement, requiring followers to pledge total abstinence. Harris Museum & Art Gallery

Industrial Revolutionaries is a major new temporary exhibition at the Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston. It spans 150 years with the key personalities and the movements they created– its influence, its history and its global impact – revealed through over 70 objects including portraits, major loans and key collection items, some newly conserved and on display for the first time.

Multi-sensory and hands-on, the exhibition puts people’s stories at the forefront.  Visitors will discover the connection between familiar historical figures and lesser-known individuals. They will see how the actions of these people in Preston contributed to the Industrial Revolution:

Sir Richard Arkwright: Preston-born inventor of the water-frame, entrepreneur and developer of the factory system, Arkwright rose to become the richest commoner in the country.

Charles Dickens: author and social commentator, who visited Preston during the lock-out and strile of 1853, no doubt influencing his novel Hard Times.

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels were also writing about these events and asking will Preston be a test case for proletarian revolution?

Elizabeth Gaskell, author with a social agenda, influenced by events during the lock-out and strike of 1853-54. She fictionalised Preston weaver and orator George Cowell in her novel North and South.

Joseph Livesey: Champion of the poor and temperence campaigner.

Henry Hunt: Preston’s first radical MP and people’s hero.

Father Joseph ‘Daddy’ Dunn: Well respected and affectionately nick-named, he pioneered Preston’s achievement of being the first gas-lit town in Britain.

Rev. John Clay: Prison chaplain and reformer in the fields of crime and public health

Annie Hill: Half-time child mill worker and unusual in the fact that her portrait was painted by artist Patti Mayor

John and Samuel Horrocks: industrial innovators who developed the Yard Works and created Britain’s largest cotton-manufacturing company and factory with world-wide connections and influences.

Horrockses Yard Works mill model made by Horrockses employees in 1913 for the occasion of the Royal Visit to Preston. Harris Museum & Art Gallery

This brilliant and thought-provoking exhibition also animates one of the museum’s social history collection’s most iconic objects – the Horrockses Yard Works model, a large scale model of a cotton mill. Forerunner of the multinationals, Horrockses was by 1913 Britain’s largest cotton manufacturer with a huge global network. Visitors will experience the world behind the scenes at the enormous mill complex through digital interpretation.

Other exhibits include Joseph Wright of Derby’s portrait of Richard Arkwright, a portrait of Henry Hunt MP, a Tee-Total teapot, the newly conserved tram wagon, Preston Prison whipping horse, specially recorded versions of street ballads plus unseen footage of Preston in North West Film Archive by local filmmakers Will Onda and Mitchell & Kenyon.

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Spencer Tunick at The Lowry

After SKV’s brilliant splash in early March across all the mainstream national and regional media announcing the call for nude volunteers for The Lowry’s major new commission by Spencer Tunick, our art-focused campaign is well underway with a good response so far.  Some writers are even keen to get involved with what should be a really exhilarating experience on the day…

Spencer Tunick installation in Helsinki


12 June to 26 September 2010

The Lowry Galleries, Salford

Salford and Manchester provide the backdrop for a new large-scale installation by international artist Spencer Tunick this May, using his favoured material – the nude human body.

This particular installation has been commissioned for The Lowry‘s tenth anniversary. It represents a new departure for Spencer Tunick as he creates his first ever multiple site installation while the project itself is his first visual response to the work of another artist for the entirety of a project – LS Lowry.

The resulting photographic and film work will be shown at The Lowry from 12 June – 26 September as part of the exhibition, Everyday People.

The Lowry in Salford is marking ten years of creative excellence by commissioning New York-based Spencer Tunick to create an installation across eight locations in the two neighbouring cities this May.

The artist is renowned for site-specific landscapes in which he photographs hundreds or even thousands of nude volunteers, and previous installations have been staged in Sydney, London, Montreal, Melbourne, Santiago, Barcelona and Gateshead, featuring mass gatherings of nude participants posed in formations within major urban landscapes.

With the challenge of choosing to create his work across multiple sites, Tunick will also focus on the concept of ‘everyday people’ for the Salford and Manchester installation as a reference to the compositional style of LS Lowry, whose figurative works depict a mass of bodies going about their daily life. In contrast to his usual compositional style, he will break new ground in his approach by capturing the movement of everyday people within each photograph.

The exhibition will reveal Spencer Tunick’s unique photographs taken at each location, and an accompanying film will capture the essence of the installations across Salford and Manchester. The exhibition will also reference Tunick’s work within the broader context of artists working with the human body.

Michael Simpson, The Lowry’s Head of Visual Arts & Engagement says: “The Lowry commissions innovative, engaging and exciting contemporary art and is a key part of both the North West and UK visual art world. Tunick’s work not only reflects and records the landscape of an area but also its people.  The Lowry has spent ten years delighting, engaging and challenging both local and national audiences with the very best in visual art and performance. This exhibition celebrates our achievements and signals our continuing ambition.”

Spencer Tunick explains, “Salford and Manchester presents an intriguing prospect for my latest UK installation based both on the rich industrial heritage that exists across both cities and the art of LS Lowry. LS Lowry’s paintings depicting the mass of everyday people who contributed to the industrial machine of the 20th century, also provide an interesting frame of reference in terms of the compositional possibilities of the installations.”

To illuminate Everyday People further, The Lowry has commissioned a series of critical essays around the work of Spencer Tunick, the first of which, by Sarah Kent, will be published at http://www.thelowry.com/spencertunick on 6 April.

Spencer Tunick’s temporary site-specific installations have been commissioned by the XXV Biennial de Sao Paulo, Brazil (2002); Institut Cultura, Barcelona (2003); The Saatchi Gallery (2003); MOCA Cleveland (2004) and the Vienna Kunsthalle (2008) among others.

The Lowry is delighted to present Everyday People with the generous support of Arts Council England Sustain fund.

Editors Notes

The Lowry celebrates its 10th anniversary on 28 April 2010 and has spent 10 years delighting, engaging and challenging both local and national audiences with the very best in visual art and performance. The Lowry Centre Trust is a not-for-profit charitable organisation and registered charity (no. 1053962). All income supports our world-class Theatres and Galleries programme, the care and display of the LS Lowry Collection and our life-changing Community and Education work. The Lowry’s Chief Executive, Julia Fawcett was awarded an OBE for services to the Arts in the Queen’s 2010 New Year Honours list.

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April is the busiest month…

Exhibition at CHIPs building Ancoats Summer 2009

We’re working on lots of really great commissions, exhibitions, performances and festivals at the moment.  And I’m sure April won’t be the busiest month when I look at everyone we’re working for!

Spencer Tunick Everyday People at The Lowry

Queer Up North Manchester

Light Nights Liverpool

Industrial Revolutionaries The Harris Preston

Liverpool Biennial 2010


Manchester Day

Liverpool to Liverpool: Simon Faithfull

Buddleia commissions in Cheetham Hill Manchester


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