Manchester Collective collaborators Abel Selaocoe, Hannah Peel and Ben Nobuto
Photography: Phil Sharp

  • Featuring new work by Hannah Peel, Abel Selaocoe, Lyra Pramuk and Vessel alongside Julius Eastman, Henryk Górecki and Dobrinka Tabakova
  • Residencies at London’s Southbank Centre, St George’s Bristol, Where The Light Gets In restaurant in Stockport and non-traditional spaces across the UK

Collaboration and connection are at the heart of Manchester Collective’s 21/22 season, where cutting-edge, cross-genre commissions rub shoulders with classical masterpieces, shining a spotlight on compelling artistic voices from the past and present.

In the Collective’s most ambitious season to date, major residencies at London’s Southbank Centre, St George’s Bristol and Hallé St Peter’s in Manchester sit alongside intimate gigs in Salford, Leeds, Birkenhead and Nottingham. New artistic collaborations are forged and existing relationships will evolve in boundary-pushing commissions and projects featuring Mahan Esfahani, Edmund Finnis, Ruby Hughes, Ben Nobuto, Laurence Osborn, Hannah Peel, Lyra Pramuk, Abel Selaocoe and Vessel. The season features six world premieres across ten cities.

Above all, this is a season of work that celebrates the joy of music as a shared experience. Listeners will be taken on sonic journeys that take inspiration from different times, diverse cultures and hugely varied sounds – from the neon lights and pulsing rhythms of New York and Tokyo, through to the electrifying musical traditions of South Africa and Mali. Exquisite songs of the early Renaissance will coexist alongside dazzling new work, with line-ups ranging from full string orchestra to live electronics, African percussion to jazz harpsichord.

Fostering a free flow of artistic ideas across genres and artforms to create meaningful and inclusive artistic experiences for people of all backgrounds has been at the heart of Manchester Collective’s work since it was founded five years ago. Their 21/22 season follows a milestone year in which they released their debut album The Centre is Everywhere, unveiled their first ever audio-visual installation Dark Days, Luminous Nights, andwill make their debut at London’s Wigmore Hall (this Saturday 17 July) and at the BBC Proms (17 August).

Adam Szabo, co-founder and Chief Executive of Manchester Collective, said:“After a tough year, we thought hard about the kinds of shows that we wanted to tour. We’ve come up with a set of work that feels vital and urgent – a celebration of the music that that brings joy and nourishment to so many people over the world. We’ll be bringing seven new programmes to a dizzying range of venues, from the beloved Queen Elizabeth Hall in London to the brilliant new Future Yard in Birkenhead. Alongside brand-new work, we’ll be touring some much-loved musical gems – though it wouldn’t be a Manchester Collective season if we weren’t putting our own spin on those as well. It’s going to be a landmark year in the Collective’s musical journey.”


  • In an evolution of their hugely popular Sirocco collaboration, the Collective teams up once again with cellist, composer and singer Abel Selaocoe, and his trio Chesaba, for a brand-new show. Featuring original work by Abel, The Oracle will bring music from South Africa, the Ivory Coast and Mali together with 20th-century classical repertoire in an explosive celebration of musical traditions from across the globe.
  • A new work by Emmy-nominated and RTS-winning composer Hannah Peel will be at the centre of Neon – a new show for strings, percussion and live electronics, which interrogates the darker side of the American dream. Featuring music by Julius Eastman, David Lang and Steve Reich, the programme also includes a new piece written for the Collective by Berlin-based artist Lyra Pramuk.
  • New commissions for amplified strings, big percussion and live electronics are also at the heart of Heavy Metal – a loud and intense programme featuring premieres by long-time collaborator Vessel (Sebastian Gainsborough) and Japanese-British composer Ben Nobuto. They sit alongside an eclectic repertoire of music, from Bryce Dessner and Dobrinka Tabakova to Michael Gordon’s Industry.
  • The Collective’s musical partnership with soprano Ruby Hughes continues. In This Savage Parade, Ruby alongside a full string orchestra will give the world premiere of a new song cycle set to the words of British poet Alice Oswald. Written by long-standing Collective collaborator, Edmund Finnis, it will be performed alongside music by Gustav Mahler and Benjamin Britten.
  • A hallmark of the Collective’s programming, modern masterpieces sit alongside new commissions throughout the season. The world premiere of a new work by British composer Alex Groves – conjuring up a meditative seascape for live electronics and strings – will be performed alongside George Crumb’s enigmatic Vox Balaenae in their otherworldly Voice of the Whale show.
  • Presenting and sharing classical music in new formats will continue to be a focus this season, with listening parties, film screenings (including a collaboration with filmmaker Jessie Rodger) and specially-curated events of live music, food and drink at celebrated chef Sam Buckley’s green-Michelin starred restaurant in Stockport, Where The Light Gets In.

Manchester Collective’s touring projects this season are Voice of the Whale (September-October 2021), Automata (November 2021), Heavy Metal (December 2021), A Little Requiem (February 2022), The Oracle (March-April 2022), Neon (May 2022) and This Savage Parade (June 2022).

Venue partners this season include: Future Yard in Birkenhead, St George’s Bristol, the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff, Leeds International Concert Season, Opera North and Howard Assembly Room in Leeds, Kings Place in London, Southbank Centre in London, Hallé St Peter’s in Manchester, Lakeside Arts in Nottingham, Saffron Hall in Saffron Walden, The White Hotel in Salford, and Where The Light Gets In in Stockport.

For full programme details, visit