Manchester International Festival (MIF) has offered five Greater Manchester artists, each within the first ten years of their career, the unique opportunity of an MIF21 Creative Fellowship.
The Fellowships provide mentoring support, a £3,000 bursary, opportunities to shadow the creation of major Festival productions from February 2021 until completion at Manchester International Festival (1-18 July 2021) and national and international connections to support their future work.
The selected artists are: musician and sound artist Raheel Khan, whose work explores notions of heritage and society; actor, writer and director Corey Weekes, founder of Vision Centre for Actors; dancer, actor and director Yandass Ndlovu, star of MIF19’s Alphabus; Vinca Atta, an artist who fuses hip-hop and reggae music with comedy; and Audrey Albert, a Mauritian maker, artist and photographer exploring themes of national identity and collective memory.
The MIF21 Creative Fellows will find out what goes into the creation, production and presentation of major Festival productions – as well as discover how MIF are planning towards The Factory, MIF’s future year-round home.
MIF ran similar successful schemes at MIF19 and MIF17, where the Fellows were able to get under the skin of Festival highlights such as Idris Elba and Kwame Kwei-Armah’s Tree, Tania Bruguera’s School of Integration, and 10,000 Gestures created by Boris Charmatz.
Amy Lawrence, a former MIF Creative Fellow and current MIF trustee said, “It has had a huge positive impact on my artistic development and taken my practice to a higher level.”
With the creative community seriously affected by the COVID-19 crisis, MIF has been finding ways to offer support to artists and creatives based in Greater Manchester. Other initiatives have included online Remote Residencies, digital workshops, bespoke funding for music industry professionals and regular online drop-in sessions for freelancers and creatives to offer advice and build networks.
MIF has also continued to actively support and be part of GM Artist Hub, offering advice and resources to the independent practitioners, artists, and companies of Greater Manchester.