Joining the Royal Northern College of Music for its 50th anniversary celebrations as Artists-in-Residence, radical arts group Manchester Collective present two breathtaking shows on Fri 2 Dec and Fri 10 Feb showcasing the immense musical talent throughout the organisation.

On Fri 2 Dec, the collective perform Places We Know, an electrifying concert which looks to redefine the possibilities of classical music. Opening with a stirring contemplation of loss by incendiary Brooklyn composer Missy Mazzoli, the concert features an ‘adventurous programme of the familiar and unfamiliar’, transporting guests through flower gardens, winding stone paths and imperious beech trees at the resplendent Dumbarton Oaks estate in the USA with Caroline Shaw’s ‘Plan & Elevation’, followed by a stark about-turn with Dmitri Shostakovitch’s heart-rending tour-de-force, ‘Chamber Symphony’, and a brand new commission by composer Oliver Leith – described by BBC Radio 3 as ‘deadpan, subversive and quietly anarchic’ – at the heart of the show.

Billed as ‘a full-body experience’, the string orchestra under their Music Director Rakhi Singh offers a freshly immersive musical experience for seasoned concert-goers and first-time audiences alike.

On Fri 10 Feb, Manchester Collective presents Bag of Bones, a ‘bewitching’ new project by vocalist Alice Zawadzki which enlists a cross-breed ensemble comprising keys, accordion, percussion and strings to create an admixture of romance, jazz and studio theatre ‘filtered through a hessian sack of deep, dark Central European folklore’. A deeply personal piece of music theatre, Bag of Bones contends with cultural history and inherited stories as experience through the prism of Zawadzki’s Polish heritage. Promising music at ‘its most thrilling, dangerous and cathartic’, the work offers no saccharine melodic jazz, yet still discovers lightness through its shadowy, pensive story.


A Manchester Wire Partnership post
Fri 2 Dec - Fri 10 Feb, 8pm, RNCM,
124 Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9RD
, Tel: 0161 907 5200, From £9
Wolf McFarlane
Published on:
Fri 18 Nov 2022