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Week 53 festival at The Lowry opens TODAY – 70 performances by 100 artists in 12 days

Thursday 17th May 2018

The Lowry’s flagship cross-arts festival, Week 53, opens TODAY - with over 70 performances by 100 artists over the next 12 days. (Thursday 17 to Monday 28 May)

Work in the programme celebrates ‘the coming of age’ in recognition of The Lowry’s 18th birthday.

The line-up includes:

  • The first ever stage adaptation of food writer, Nigel Slater’s award-winning autobiography, Toast
  • An exhibition about motherhood and female adolescence by Chantal Joffe entitled Personal Feeling Is the Main Thing
  • A new production of Graham Greene’s classic thriller, Brighton Rock by Pilot Theatre 
  • An aerial performance featuring Japanese knot-tying in Everything I See I Swallow by circus duo, Tamsin Shasha and Maisy Taylor
  • A dramatic, site-specific light sculpture depicting human brain activity entitled Nervous by Tom Dekyvere in the art centre’s foyer
  • The UK premiere of French choreographer, Eric Minh Cuong Castaing’s artificial intelligence-inspired work, School of Moon, which features both child and robotic dancers
  • The English language premiere of Hikikomori - a theatre production by Joris Mathieu inspired by the half a million reclusive young Japanese adults who have withdrawn from social life
  • The world premiere of Seven Inch - a spoken word comedy performance about loneliness and music’s digital coming of age by Manchester artist, Fat Roland 
  • A celebration of all things digital from the last 40 years in Hacked on Classics by Seb Lee-Delise, which takes a look at how popular retro gadgets actually work 
  • Michael Keegan-Dolan’s Swan Lake / Loch na hEala – a magical new staging of the classic ballet which collides ancient mythology and the complexity of modern Ireland
  • Teentalitarianism – a series of events at which teenagers take control by Canadian company Mammalian Diving Reflex.

An immersive performance in the tunnels beneath Barton Arcade in Manchester city centre is also part of the line-up. MADHOUSE re:exit by Access All Areas examines the institutionalisation of people with learning disabilities and was specially commissioned for Week 53

Late night visitors to building can also explore the, normally off-limits, backstage areas of The Lowry thanks to award-winning artist, David Shearing, whose creation The Dock: Enough of the Theatrics comprises neon, lasers, balloons and confetti and invites people to enter a world of youthful energy, play and party.

Julia Fawcett OBE, chief executive of The Lowry, said: “Week 53 champions bold and experimental art across all genres and represents a period in our calendar when anything is possible.

“This year’s festival focusses on ‘the coming of age’ and the multitude of scenarios in which that ‘process’ takes place. It coincides with a milestone for The Lowry – that being the 18th anniversary of our opening – which gives the theme an added significance to our staff and long-standing patrons.”

The inaugural Week 53 festival in 2016 drew over 10,000 visitors – 33% of which had never been to The Lowry before. The programme comprised 63 performances by more than 200 artists and further strengthened The Lowry’s position as the most visited cultural destination in the North West.

The Lowry opened on 28 April 2000 as ‘The National Landmark Millennium Project for the Arts’. The building was officially opened six months later by HM The Queen on 12 October 2000.

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