Running throughout the year, MACFEST aims to foster understanding between the Muslim community and the wider public. It’s a wide-ranging celebration of the many cultural aspects of the Islamic diaspora in Manchester. It features many different events, including talks, presentations, concerts, and workshops – which are now open for booking. The full calendar can be found on the official website, but below are just five of the best.

Celebrate Ramadan with Hello from Turkey | Sun 2 May | 3pm-4.30pm | FREE

To mark the end of the Ramadan fasting period, a traditional Iftar meal will be broadcast live from Istanbul. You’ll learn about Turkey’s cuisine and also its cultural heritage – with a look at marble painting, miniature art, and musical instruments. The event is hosted by artist Asiye Yaman and musician Tugba Gulyesil.

MACFEST heads to Oldham | Sat 5 Jun | 11am-4pm | FREE

The town’s long-established Muslim community will be celebrated at this special afternoon event. COVID-regulations permitting, it will take place in the town’s ultra-modern Library and Art Gallery. A host of artistic and cultural activities are planned, and the full details will be announced over the coming weeks.

35 Greaves Street, Oldham, OL1 1AL
Set off on a culture walk with Greater Manchester Walking Festival | Sat 7 Aug | 11am-4pm | FREE

MACFEST is working in partnership with the Greater Manchester Walking Festival to present this stroll, which aims to build cultural bridges and promote community cohesion. Starting from Manchester Central Mosque, you’ll wind your way to The Whitworth, where you can take part in various heritage-based activities. Food and entertainment will be provided.

20 Upper Park Road, Victoria Park, Manchester, M14 5RU
Enjoy poetry, art & architecture at Arab Heritage Festival | Sat 11 Sep | 2pm-4pm | FREE

Actor and comedian Abdullah Afzal will host this afternoon of activities. It centres on many facets of Arabic culture, including its poetry, art, and architecture. Dr Noorah Al-Gailani will present artefacts from Glasgow Museum, the institution where she is Curator of Islamic Civilisations. For entertainment, there will be singers from Syria and Egypt.

Enjoy a free musical bonanza with The Nile Band | Sun 19 Sep | 2pm-3.30pm | £0-£9.21

Broadcast live from The Lowry, this concert is a (belated) celebration of Eid-al-Fitr. The Nile Band is a renowned UK-based group with members from all around the Middle East. They play the music of the Arab world, mixed with Latin, French, and English popular songs. The event is free for unemployed people and students.

Mon 26 Apr
A. James Simpkin
Published on:
Mon 26 Apr 2021