Patti Smith, Arlo Parks and more to play Manchester International Festival 2021

Celebrating its return for 2021, the Manchester International Festival has announced its programme for 2021

Leading the new names is the iconic New York Musician, poet, artist, author, activist Patti Smith. Crossing the Atlantic for two special shows, the Patti Smith Quartet will kickstart the MIF21 live music series with two exclusive shows in Manchester.

Having recently released her stunning debut album, Collapsed In SunbeamsArlo Parks will take the stage on Friday 9th July alongside a string section from the Royal Northen Colledge of Music. Her largest show to date, the event will see her take her debut album to life up in Manchester.

Teaming up with Homecoming, an independent Black-owned digital platform and festival of cultural exchange in Nigeria, MIF21 will be taken over for a night by Homecoming Live. Kicking off the new partnership between the two festivals, the event will bring Homecoming’s ethos of championing creativity and arts from across the African continent to Manchester. Speaking of the collaboration Grace Ladoja, Founder of Homecoming says: “Homecoming is a vehicle of cultural exchange, empowerment and amplifying creatives. I am so excited to bring the inspiring creative energy from Nigeria and Africa to Manchester.”

Elsewhere, the festival’s music programming will see Cerys Matthews curate a stage of spoken work music, poetry, song and rap; Singer Abi Sampa, kora virtuoso Sona Jobarteh and poet Muneera Williams headline a special event launching a new festival of Islamic art and culture and The National’s Dessner brother collaborate with John Hopkins to create the soundtrack for All of This Unreal Time. 

Manchester’s International Festival runs from 1-18th July across the city. Tickets for the festival’s events go on sale from May 20th. For more information, including a full programme, head over to the MIF21 website.


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