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AND Festival Transforms First Street

First Street will be transformed into a celebration of cinema, culture and arts.

Written by . Published on August 28th 2012.


AND Festival Transforms First Street

ABANDON Normal Devices (AND) festival is held annually in Manchester and Liverpool on alternate years. Its return to Manchester this August will transform many of the city’s cinemas, galleries and cultural spaces into imaginatively anarchic media experiences.

Teenage brain functions allegedly mean that they reach conclusions totally unlike that of adults, so if you’d like to see firsthand for yourself how teenage worldviews are formed Ask A Teenager 

The four-day festival will run from 29 August–2 September with the First Street area aiming to place the first bricks of its eventual transformation into Manchester’s centre of arts and culture.

The festival arrives shortly after the announcement that a 500,000 sq ft development at the north of First Street adjoining Whitworth Street West will open in 2014 as a new cultural and commercial heart of Manchester.

Both Number One First Street and the Cornerhouse along with its newly merged partner the Library Theatre Company, will be hosting events for an estimated 33,000 visitors over the AND festival.

This year’s event will include a whole host of varied events from film screenings, shows, exhibitions, talks, workshops, installations performances and online projects.

For the duration of the event the lawn outside Number One First Street will be overrun with caravans except not in a Dale Farm sense. The convoy of caravans will be the temporary home of Mobile Republic with the mobile homes radically remodelled by artists and architects to form a ‘big-top’ style social space when parked together. The installation will also become a performance space, artist’s studio and indoor/outdoor cinema.

Mobile RepublicMobile Republic

The rationales behind Harry Enfield’s Kevin The Teenager will also be explored in Ask A Teenager on 1 September. A panel of teenagers will solve problems put to them via anonymous online response or live audience members.

Teenage brain functions allegedly mean that they reach conclusions totally unlike that of adults, so if you’d like to see firsthand for yourself how teenage worldviews are formed Ask A Teenager will be taking place on the Fifth Floor of Number One First Street.

Ask A TeenagerAsk A Teenager

A European cinema first will also light up AND festival as Brooklyn artists Todd Chandler and Jeff Stark construct their post-apocalyptic drive-in cinema.

Empire Drive-In will transform the Hulme Street car park into a dystopian wasteland of 25 wrecked cars for movie goers to sit in and a 40-foot screen made of salvaged wood. The cinema programme has some fitting films for the atmosphere including Robocop and Mad Max 2, along with live soundtracks and performances.

John Hughes, Director at Ask Developments, said: “We are delighted that First Street will host these innovative events this summer with the arrival of the Abandon Normal Devices festival.

“It is fitting that both Number One and the wider First Street estate should become the location for these unique installations, given that this will be the location of the city’s new cultural destination, with a public square that will act as the backdrop for a series of equally exciting shows and performances.

“We are proud to be continuing to work with Cornerhouse, to explore ways in which we can  work together to bring the First Street site to life before development is completed on the new cultural facilities.  We have no doubt that First Street will become an artistic centre of excellence for arts and culture in the city and beyond.”

Visit www.andfestival.org.uk for further information.

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