Manchester International Festival 2019 lineup bang on the Monae as Yoko Ono to ask crowds to sing for peace

Manchester International Festival returns this July and will be bigger than ever.

The 18-day festival will welcome projects from stars including Idris Elba, Skepta, David Lynch and Yoko Ono.

Yoko, 86, will open the festival with a mass-participatory artwork which will invite crowds to sing for peace at Cathedral Gardens.

Cult US director and Twin Peaks creator Lynch will bring his largest UK exhibition of visual art to date to HOME. The project includes Lynch-inspired gigs from musicians of his picking, screenings of his films and those that have influenced him as well as conversations with the man himself. 

Manchester both Maxine Peake and Sarah Frankcom will celebrate the legacy of Velvet Underground singer Nico with a theatrical look into her identity at the Stoller Hall, with an all-female creative team.

Grammy nominated singer-songwriter Janelle Monáe will perform an exclusive show to open the festival with a bang on July 4.

BBC Radio 6 DJ Mary Anne Hobbs will bring together five of the most exciting and boundary pushing electronic acts for one evening only, with Jlin, Holly Herndon, Aïsha Devi ft. MFO, Klara Lewis and Katie Gately performing.

Grime star Skepta has stepped beyond his musical outings with DYSTOPIA987, a series of intimate events held in secret locations across Manchester, celebrating the rave culture where his roots lie.

Idris Elba and Kwame Kwei-Armah have collaborated to bring their play Tree to the festival. Combining dance, music and film to tell the story of a young man on a journey of healing.

At the announcement for the line up, Kwame said: “We want you dancing, sweating and moving,” with their aim to make the play like a club, playing South African house music.

The incredibly rounded selection of performers is topped off with a partnership between legendary composer Philip Glass and actor/director Phelim McDermott who bring Tao of Glass to the festival for its world premiere.

Manchester International Festival has once again proved its ability to bring the biggest names in the world of art to our city.

The full line up of events can be seen on the Manchester International Festival website here:

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