From Wed 24 – Fri 26 Jan, Manchester School of Art and Manchester School of Theatre present Future Flares, a festival of creative exploration which celebrates the profound impact of performance and visual arts with an unmissable programme of exhibitions, workshops, discussions and presentations.

Featuring installations and showcases from an esteemed cohort of international theatre-makers and artists, Future Flares offers an array of free and affordable events for both Manchester Met students and the wider public to enjoy, each with their own method of confronting broad societal challenges through breathtaking creativity.

Here are some of our highlights.

Working Method - Enkidu Khaled | Wed 24 - Fri 26 Jan | Grosvenor East Studio Theatre | 7pm | £7 (£4 concessions)

Blending the abstract notions of performance and workshop in a room decorated with countless paper and drawings, Belgian-Iraqi artist and theatre-maker Enkidu Khaled elucidates the complex process of theatre creation with a uniquely interactive four-step plan, exhorting the audience to reflect on the power of art and how it can be deployed to save a world in regression.

working method at future flares

A String Section - Restless Sleepers | Thu 25 Jan | Grosvenor East Theatre | 7.30pm | £7 (£4 concessions)

Hailed as ‘a work of dazzling maturity’ by This is Tomorrow (Maddy Costa), A String Section sees Leen Dewilde of contemporary theatre company Reckless Sleepers continue her illustrious career of material destruction with a simple set of five chairs, five women and five saws.

Searching for the grace and catharsis in demolition as a creative act, the cast saw at the chairs as they sit on them, consciously destabilising themselves in a refreshing embrace of precarity over security, responding to the social conventions of comfort and safety with innovative and direct performance.

a string section at future flares

Another Way of Telling - Michael Pinchbeck | Thu 25 Jan | 1pm | Grosvenor East Building | FREE

To mark the 40th anniversary of John Berger and Jean Mohr’s seminal investigation into the nature of photography, Michael Pinchbeck expands their breathtaking thesis with an immersive exhibition which explores the process of storytelling through images, the relationship between photograph and performance, artist and subject.

While a captivating slideshow asks how photographs tell a story, a single performer (Hayley Doherty) uses a live camera to guide the audience through the pages of a book, as well as a medical trolley piled with Mohr’s pictures and Berger’s meditations, oscillating between truth and fiction as she ‘becomes the woman whose life the pictures evoke’.

highlights from MMU's future flares festival

This exhibition is free to attend. Book your spot using the link below.


Nerve in the Bone - Gillian Dyson | Thu 25 Jan | Grosvernor East Performance Studio | FREE

Promising ‘a meditative and uncanny performance’, Dyson’s Nerve in the Bone examines the tensions – both social and physical – of feminine ageing, uniting the slow Butoh dance form with body-based performance art upon a floor of broken crockery.

An Image is an Act Not a Thing | Fri 26 Jan | Grosvenor East Theatre | 12pm | FREE

Described as ‘a collaborative exploration of live performance and image-making for screen and projection’, this free drop-in exhibition features arresting works by students from the Manchester School of Arts’ Drama, Contemporary Performance, Filmmaking, Art Theory and Practice and Fine Art courses.

Devised by Jenny Baines and Brigid McLeer, the evocative project collates live and recorded responses to Pieter Bruegel The Elder’s 1560 painting ‘Children’s Games’, exploring the timeless performative potential of art through an iconic Renaissance masterwork.

A Manchester Wire Partnership post
Wed 24 Jan - Fri 26 Jan,
Cavendish St, Manchester M15 6BG
Wolf McFarlane
Published on:
Fri 19 Jan 2024