Day one of Manchester International Festival – here’s a look at what’s on and what you’ll actually be able to get into:


Kenneth Brannagh – in his first Shakespearean role for over a decade – and cast tackle of the most important and revered plays of all time.
Secret location, Manchester City Centre, 7.30pm £65, Preview showing, only available to Greater Manchester residents

Massive Attack vs Adam Curtis
‘A collective hallucination’ – one of Britain’s most influential bands, collaborating with the isle’s most direct, powerful documentary maker. This is the group’s first set of live performances since 2010, and Curtis’ triumphant return following it Felt Like a Kiss at MIF2009
Mayfield Depot, M1 2QF, 9pm, £36,

The Old Woman
Willem Dafoe and Mikhail Baryshnikov star in director Robert Wilson’s new production. Following Wilson’s The Life and Death of Marina Abramovich at MIF2011, this is an adaptation of the work of the same name by Daniil Kharms – a story of struggle and humour.
Palace Theatre, M1 6FT, £23 – £45, 7.30pm

Michelangelo Sonnets
Virtuoso Peter Sellars makes his MIF debut, directing performances of Shostakovich’s Suite on Michelangelo Buonarroti and Bach’s Cantata BWV 56, ‘Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne tragen’, with Eric Owens on baritone – the first public performances at The Albert Hall in almost 40 years.
Albert Hall, M2 5QJ, 9pm, £35,

Thu 4 Jul
Matthew Britton
Published on:
Sun 2 Jun 2013