29 June – 16 July 2017
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About us

‘Few cultural events have established themselves with such clarity and self-confidence as Manchester International Festival… MIF has quickly taught audiences to expect the unexpected’  The Financial Times, July 2015

Manchester International Festival (MIF) is the world’s first festival of original, new work and special events. The Festival is staged every two years in Manchester, UK – the next edition will take place from 29 June to 16 July 2017 at venues all over the city.

MIF launched in 2007 as an artist-led festival presenting new works from across the spectrum of performing arts, visual arts and popular culture. We’ve commissioned, produced and presented world premieres by artists as diverse as Björk, Steve McQueen, Robert Wilson, Wayne McGregor, Maxine Peake, The xx, Zaha Hadid Architects, Damon Albarn, Punchdrunk, Elbow and Marina Abramović, among many others. Click here to learn more about all our previous events.

We bring together artists from different art forms and backgrounds to create dynamic, innovative and forward-thinking new work, which we stage in a rich tapestry of venues across Greater Manchester – from theatres, galleries and concert halls to railway depots, churches and car parks. We work closely with venues, festivals and other cultural organisations around the world, whose financial and creative input helps to make many of our projects possible and guarantees that they have a life after each Festival has ended.

We also work widely within communities around Manchester, originally with MIF Creative and now with a new initiative called My Festival. Launched in November 2016, My Festival is a diverse network of creative people who are forging closer connections with MIF – taking part in public projects, connecting MIF to their communities, and joining our new programme of training activities, workshops and other special events.

In 2015, John McGrath was appointed as MIF’s new Artistic Director & CEO. John was previously the Founding Artistic Director of National Theatre Wales, where he won an international reputation for large-scale site-specific works, digital innovation, international collaboration and extraordinary community involvement. John replaced Alex Poots, MIF’s founding Artistic Director, who left after ten years at the helm to set up a new cultural centre in New York, and John’s arrival at MIF marks an exciting new phase for the Festival as we enter our second decade.

MIF is a registered charity. Alongside the income we receive from Manchester City Council and Arts Council England, our principal funders, we also receive income from ticket sales and co-commissioning partners; from other public bodies, such as the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA); from private sponsorship; from charitable trusts and foundations; and from individual donations. You can learn more about supporting MIF by clicking here.