Theatres, galleries, museums, comedy, music, literature…culture has gone online
COVID-19 is one of the greatest challenges the arts and culture scene has ever faced, with Manchester venues and creatives no exception. Government aid and bodies like the Arts Council (which revealed GM Artist Hub has launched to help independent practitioners, artists and companies throughout Greater Manchester.) have provided some relief for staff and self-employed, while local arts bodies have also chimed in: Manchester International Festival has collated a GMCA for artworks and poems responding to the crisis; and
Nevertheless many have been left reeling, often turning to heartfelt crowdfunders, while the Music Venue Trust has launched a crisis campaign and the Creative Industries Federation a plea for funding. Meanwhile, Manchester’s vibrant events calendar .
There’s no denying it’s a time through which some will struggle to survive. Even now, however, the local arts and culture scene is fighting back with a myriad of initiatives and events.
Theatres, galleries, comedy, music, museums, literature…we’ve listed those bringing top-notch recreation direct to your home. This will be kept updated so feel free to check back occasionally.
THEATRES AND GALLERIES
The arts venues below have all launched special online portals…
Homemakers is series of new commissions inviting theatre and live art makers to create new works at home, for an audience who are also at home. These fully funded commissions challenged ground-breaking artists to transform the definition of ‘live theatre’ – whether through streaming, recorded performance, games, interactive stories, personal encounters, or something completely different. Work will be available on HOME’s website on a ‘pay-what-you-decide’ basis from Friday 1st May. HOME has also compiled ayou can watch online and is streaming several films.
For seven weeks until 10th May, seven freelance artists suggested seven creative ideas to help you 'take notice' for Contact's wellbeing project, which is still available online. You can keep your responses private, or share them with Contact to help create a small archive of these strange times. Contact is also hosting an array of virtual events via its website.
Love Lowry is a daily service of creative activities and art experiences for people to enjoy from their homes: offering the likes of ideas for children, adults and families; digital art designed to be experienced online; and the chance to ‘watch again’ art experiences The Lowry has in its digital archive.
Octagon Online includes a selection of activities that everyone can enjoy free of charge, including; trivia and quizzes, virtual StoryMakers sessions, a daily BSL challenge, podcasts, Get Creative challenges and blog posts.
Last summer, the Coliseum invited writers to submit new Oldham-inspired plays of 100 words or less. Inspired by this quirky project, its new Mini-Podcast series spans established names to local emerging writers, with plays performed by a cast of GM actors and edited by Grant Archer. The theatre is also offering a monologue challenge for students of its partner schools and colleges.
listings for what's on.beneficial programmes to bring creativity, health and hope into the homes of residents of Manchester and beyond; see the
You can enjoy side-splitting shows from West Didsbury Comedy Festival on Facebook. Fancy shaping up your own stand-up skills? As well as shows and events, Frog & Bucketand ComedySportz are offering courses and workshops.and on Twitch or
Venues streaming music via their websites and social media include from acid house documentaries to ‘Zooming’ choirs, are proving the show must go on., , and . Meanwhile an enterprising array of initiatives,
Alongside The Lowry, the National Football Museum is offering virtual tours via the Google Arts & Culture app - as well as exhibitions and activities on its own website - while and Rochdale Pioneers Museum have their own tours online. Many museums are delving into their collections via their websites and social media; Manchester Museum, People's History Museum and the Science and Industry Museum are amongst those offering an array of special content spanning YouTube videos to podcasts and resources. Manchester Jewish Museum, meanwhile, has even launched a virtual picnic.
Manchester short story publisher Comma Press - founder of the Northern Fiction Alliance (NFA) - has collated all the latest, from discounts to podcasts, while library-users can enjoy a free 24/7 service despite closures thanks to . Meanwhile the team at continues to round up everything from online reading clubs to writing projects and bookshops offering deliveries.
OTHER GREAT ONLINE EVENTS AND INITIATIVES
Comps, workshops and challenges
Events and exhibitions
Things to buy
Main image: Meha Art