Manchester International Festival continues to trundle on this week, with its vast brochure bursting with free and inexpensive art. Bad news: Most of the free stuff, including a performance by scene-striding musical behemoth FKA Twigs, is now filled up. Good news: There’s still plenty of free fun going on around the city this week. Who needs Björk anyway?

M+ Sigg Collection at The Whitworth (pictured)
Starting last week, The Whitworth’s newest exhibition looks back on the past 40 years in Chinese art, form the cultural revolution to present day. Includes work from big hitters like Ai Weiwei as well as lesser known artists. The name of the show comes from the collector Ulli Sigg, the Swiss sinophile who’s opened up his private collection to Mancunian eyes. Check out our full preview here.
Wed 1 Jul – Sun 20 Sep, The Whitworth, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, M15 6ER,

Richter/Pärt at The Whitworth
In Autumn 2013, artist Gerhard Richter was introduced to composer Arvo Pärt with a view to collaboration: Each artist producing new work inspired by the other. Nearly two years later, we get to enjoy the fruit of their labours as part of the Manchester International Festival. Richter presents four new pieces inspired by his muse and Pärt gives us a viewing of his new composition Drei Hirtenkinder aus Fátima, performed by a live choir. The first three performances will feature the lungs of celebrated Estonian choir Vox Clamantis with all subsequent performances drawing from a pool of local choral talent. This is one of the few free MIF events that’s still welcoming latecomers, so get on it!
Thu 9 Jul – Sun 19 Jul, Various times, The Whitworth, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, M15 6ER,

Pizza Animation at PLY
The tools of animation are varied: construction paper, acrylic paints, acetate, plasticine and now pizza. Animator Andrew Salome knows a lot about animation and, being a New Yorker, more than a little about pizza. His free workshop at Northern Quarter slice shack PLY gives foodies the opportunity to fashion their own pizzoetropes using strobe lights and sourdough. You get to eat the pizza afterwards too, provided it’s not gone cold; although some people prefer that, so maybe its best to turn up with a hangover. Advance booking is essential for this and if your appetite needs whetted further then wrap your hungry eyes around our full preview here.
Thu 9 Jul, PLY Restaurant, 26 Lever Street, Northern Quarter, M1 1DW, 6pm, booking required, 

Eastern Bloc Records Takeover at Blue Pig
We’ve feratured this weekly night before, but the endorsement’s worth repeating. It also recently featured in Vice Magazine’s rundown of the best Manc club nights. The legendary label DJs bring the best tunes from their 30-year back catalogue. If you haven’t got on this night yet, I’m not sure what more we can say to convince you, but here’s an extended preview of their summer run for your consideration.
Thu 9 Jul, The Blue Pig, 69 High Street, Manchester, M4 1FS,

Mon 6 Jul - Thu 9 Jul
Jon Whiteley
Published on:
Tue 7 Jul 2015