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MIF: Attendance Up, Satisfaction Up, Thumbs Up

Report reveals official success of Manchester International Festival

Published on October 9th 2013.

MIF: Attendance Up, Satisfaction Up, Thumbs Up

AN evaluation of Manchester International Festival 2013 has shown that the fourth festival was the most successful yet. 

The Festival now claims to enjoy a level of business and third party support unprecedented for equivalent festivals in the UK and Europe.

Headline figures include:

An economic benefit of £38m, as calculated by independent research group Morris Hargreaves McIntyre. 

An increase in non-public funding, both in real terms (up from £5.3m in 2011 to £6.5m in 2013) and as a proportion (up from 47 per cent in 2011 to 54 per cent in 2013, enabling the Festival to grow without the Council increasing its funding. 

A 3.5% increase in event attendance from 2011 to almost 250,000 people. 

96% of audience members surveyed rating the quality of events as either ‘excellent’ or good, with the same proportion saying they would be ‘very likely’ or ‘quite likely’ to attend the Festival in the future and recommend it to others. 

30% of the 2013 Festival programme was free with 50,000 people attending free events in addition to 125,000 visiting Festival Square. Some 14 events had tickets priced at £15 or under, while 5 per cent of all tickets on sale were offered to Greater Manchester residents on lower incomes at less than £12. 

23 co-commissioning and co-producing partners. 

Regional, national and international media coverage of an equivalent advertising value, excluding online coverage, of £26 million. 

405 volunteers donating more than 15,000 hours worth of work. 

251 suppliers from the Manchester city region. 

2,450 active participants in the MIF Creative and MIF Learning programmes. 

 Goldfrapp's shadow dominates Albert Hall during the Festival

Goldfrapp's shadow dominates Albert Hall during the Festival

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “This independent evaluation shows that MIF2013 has been a resounding success, building on the achievements of its predecessors and performing remarkably well. 

“It is clear that MIF has established itself as one of the ingredients of what makes Manchester a world-class city, delivering significant economic, community and cultural benefits. The Festival has established itself as an inspiring event, of which any city would be proud, and we eagerly await its return.” 

On 23 October the Council’s Executive will be asked to approve revenue support of £2m for MIF 2015, with a further £0.5m underwritten subject to continuing support from other public sector partners, notably Arts Council England.

With support from Manchester City Council and Arts Council England, MIF has been able to grow other funding sources – most notably through co-commissioning and touring - and raised £3m in sponsorship for the 2013 Festival.

Top tier sponsors include the Co-operative Group, PZ Cussons, NCP, Doubletree Hotel, Bruntwood and Manchester Airport Group. They were joined by a range of official supporters, official suppliers, corporate partners and corporate members along with a number of trusts, foundations and individual givers.

The Festival now claims to enjoy a level of business and third party support unprecedented for equivalent festivals in the UK and Europe.

Read Jonathan Schofield’s interview with Festival Director, Alex Poots, here. 

Traces of the Festival still remain

Traces of the Festival still remain - Confidential's 'Can you spot game?' for the day

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Peter JacobsOctober 9th 2013.

Not much hope for more critical voices then...

Joe LovanoOctober 14th 2013.

I eagerly await the development of a 'fringe' festival so that we can see some participation by the thousands of local creatives to give the dinosaurs a run for their money.

AnonymousOctober 14th 2013.

I thought there was a fringe festival included in the one two years ago. Fringes are organised by local creatives at the start, at least but they appear to be disorganised in Manchester. Maybe Joe can persuade them. Was not it not people around the Traverse in Edinburgh that got the Fringe there going.

Ghostly TomOctober 15th 2013.

Something should be done to encourage a fringe festival, little groups doing new events in spaces across the city to complement the main events organised by the MIF...

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