MIF 2023 put £39m into local economy

Published: 24 February 2024
Reporter: David Chadderton

Free Your Mind, the official opening production for Aviva Studios, the home of Factory International Credit: Tristram Kenton
Aviva Studios Credit: David Chadderton

A report to the council's Economy and Regeneration Scrutiny Committee revealed that last summer's Manchester International Festival attracted 325,300 visitors to the city and generated £39.2m of economic activity, this figure being the amount spent by MIF attendees and MIF itself.

The Festival utilised a record number of 428 volunteers from across the region, plus Factory International offered paid opportunities to more than 150 local musicians and performers from Manchester and the city region to perform at Festival Square, ranging from indie and punk bands and classical contemporary collectives to hip hop artists, community choirs and dance troupes.

The report also mentioned the opening season at Aviva Studios, which has attracted more than 300,000 visitors since it opened last summer, 32% of which were from Manchester, another 32% from the rest of Greater Manchester and 36% from outside the county.

Councillor Luthfur Rahman OBE, Deputy Leader Manchester City Council, said, "2023 was without doubt a stand-out year for culture in Manchester and MIF23 had a big part to play in this.

"The perfect prelude to the opening season of the much-anticipated Aviva Studios, the figures behind the festival speak for themselves in terms of demonstrating the economic and wider impact that investing in culture has on Manchester.

"From visitor spend and audience numbers, to volunteer hours and the number of amazing opportunities for local artists, residents and young people to get involved, together with a world-class programme of new work to see and enjoy, the festival delivers on every front.

"And now with the opening of Aviva Studios, the country's landmark new building for the arts, it's very clear that Manchester is the cultural place to be. The visitor numbers alone are a clear sign of the impact the building is already making in its first few months of opening and the global attention it is receiving around the world demonstrate that the venue's reach and reputation go far beyond Manchester and that it has a key part to play in helping attract more visitors and more business to the city.

"As a city we're proud of our long-standing support for culture and the arts and are committed to continuing to support the sector which is such a big part of what helps shape and make Manchester a place people want to live, work and invest in."

    Related listings

  • They - Kay Dick, adapted and co-created by Maxine Peake, Sarah Frankcom and Imogen Knight. (Factory International for Manchester International Festival)
  • untitled f*ck m*ss s**gon play - Kimber Lee (Royal Exchange Theatre, Factory International for Manchester International Festival, Young Vic and Headlong)
  • Lost And Found - Oliver Jeffers, adapted and directed by Will Brenton, music by Gruff Rhys (Factory International)
  • Free Your Mind - Sabrina Mahfouz

*Some links, including Amazon, Stageplays.com, Bookshop.org, ATG Tickets, LOVEtheatre, BTG Tickets, Ticketmaster, LW Theatres and QuayTickets, are affiliate links for which BTG may earn a small fee at no extra cost to the purchaser.

Are you sure?