Manchester City Council

What a Performance

Theatre in the morning, Art Gallery in the afternoon, although today the performance was in the Art Gallery rather than the theatre. After an Executive agenda setting meeting and a special Executive meeting discussing the London Road Fire Station CPO and then the East Manchester draft Community Plan it's on to full Council.

We start promisingly enough with a special meeting of the Council to make former Councillor Peter Morrison an honorary Alderman. Peter served a very distinguished and diligent twenty eight years on the Council before stepping down in May this year and members on both sides unanimously supported his appointment to this honorary role. Then on to Council proper. The agenda, papers and minutes have been or in the case of the minutes will be published as usual on the Council web-site so I won't dwell on those. There are significant issues on the agenda, utility price hikes, the future of the nationalised banks, the future of the NHS but when it ends after around three and a half hours, I suspect most members feel like they've been in a film where the director should have been a bit more brutal in the editing.

A couple of hours later I go to the City Art Gallery, to 11 Rooms, which is showing as part of the third Manchester International Festival. The show is in an Art Gallery, but unlike the rest of the exhibits in the gallery, here the works of art are people. In some cases " real " people, in others actors doing things. It's the sort of show that's bound to provoke the question " Is it Art ". Some people would find some of it shocking or perhaps even disgusting but I would be surprised if anyone found it boring. The different rooms provoke a wide range of emotional responses. They make you think, they can make you laugh and have made people cry. Some of it is challenging, some unfathomable and some made me think " so what ". However, it's a Wednesday afternoon. The gallery is really busy. Judging by appearances it's a wide range of people and they all seem to be getting something out of it. And it's free. It seems to me a microcosm if what MIF aims to do but it's only on until this sunday.

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There is one response to “What a Performance”

  1. REDSTEVE57 Says:

    I have always believed that art is in the eye of the beholder, and if art does provoke controversy and debate then it is achieving what I, if I was an artist, would want and that is stimulating the public, the audience, and the viewers into expressing an opinion about the work.
    I would like to congratulate the Manchester International Festival for producing, yet again, a magnificent mixture of outstanding performances and artistic masterpieces and it’s still not finished!
    Clearly the Festival has attracted a multitude of visitors from around the globe and proved a great money spinner for local businesses that provide employment for Manchester residents. Well done MIF!!!



The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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