Christmas in Manchester: Enlighten Festival line-up

Enlighten Festival of Light and Sound Art promises to provide a haven away from the bustling Manchester Christmas Markets, with a celebration of light, sound and... Philip Pullman!

Feature by News Team | 10 Nov 2015

Philip Pullman's translation of Grimm's fairy tales is the inspiration for a new work that will receive its premiere at a new festival in Manchester this December.

Enlighten Festival of Light and Sound Art will open with The Bremen Town Musicians, a music and live animation work by composer Enrica Sciandrone, influenced by Pullman's take on Grimm's classic stories and performed by Manchester's leading new music ensemble, Psappha.

Taking place 10-12 December at Manchester Central Library and the Bridgewater Hall, Enlighten brings together international visual artists, designers and musicians in a 'celebration of light, sound and literature' – and the His Dark Materials author isn't the only literary element of the festival. Scotsman Poet of the Year and Manchester Writing School member Adelle Stripe will appear among a programme of more than 15 installations, performances and talks, presenting her poetry project Beyond the Silver Pit

Acclaimed light artists Paul Friedlander and Ulf Pedersen will both be introducing world premieres, while audiovisual artist Kathy Hinde's work with Liverpool-based contemporary composer Matthew Fairclough, One Thousand Birds, will be presented at the Bridgewater Hall.

The main venue for the festival, Central Library, will host nightly performances and be illuminated by different artists' light works. 

Curated by Manchester-based production company Curated Place to coincide with UNESCO's International Year of Light, this is the first edition proper of Enlighten, following a pilot programme last year which saw the trees and water fountains of Piccadilly Gardens illuminated by different art works.

All events are free/pay what you want. Guaranteed seating for the opening night performance of The Bremen Town Musicians can be secured for £8. 

Enlighten Manchester, 10-12 December 2015

Central Library: Thursday 10 December: 5pm-8pm (with launch performance by Psappha at 6pm); Friday 11 December: 5.30pm-8pm; Saturday 12 December: 5.30pm-8pm

The Bridgewater Hall: 10-12 December: Works by Kathy Hinde and Matthew Fairclough