WHEN IN MANCHESTER: A brand new festival featuring Manchester’s upcoming bands and more. The festival is taking place in Northern Quarter pubs. It features indie rock bands to watch in 2016, and is organised by women passionate about live music.
What makes this festival stand out from many others is the fact that the organisers are young women who are arranging something like this for the first time. Meet Ellen Offredy, aged 21, Nicole Burrows, aged 20, and Abi Richardson, and Miriam Rahimov, who are both 19.
The four all know each other through their mutual love of music. They decided to create a festival together following a night out in Manchester when they unexpectedly bumped into each other in Gullivers – where part of the festival is going to be held.
Ellen believes that as women trying to make it in the music industry it is important they all support each other.
She says: “Working together hasn’t put a strain on us at all. If anything, it’s made us closer friends.”
Whilst describing the organising process Abi says: “It has gone pretty smoothly so far.
“I think Manchester has some brilliant festivals already … but hopefully there is room for one more in the calendar.”
The title When In Manchester stemmed from the night the girls came across each other in Gullivers.
Ellen says: “We were all really drunk drinking rosé and whiskey from the bottles and passing it around, when really none of us are big rosé drinkers at all. I think there was an offer on at the time. We started saying “when in Manchester drink the rosé” as an excuse, and before we knew it the excuse for anything slightly unusually one of us said or did was “when in Manchester”.
“We even made an Instagram account called @wheninmcr posting memes of each other drinking rosé. God knows why we thought that was funny but that’s the same Instagram we’re using for the festival!”
The Manchester based bands When In Manchester will be featuring are Lunar, Louie Louie, The Prions, Girl Friend, No Hot Ashes (Read the interview with the band here), Cupids, and Kashmere. This line up has been crafted to give a variety of exciting, upcoming bands with big things ahead.
Kashmere’s Joey Newey says: “the fact four young people have made their own festival is absolutely top.
“We’ve always gone down well here, and we love to play in Manchester. Some of the venues are just ace as well. There are so many small to massive venues to play here all with their own individual character.”
Kashmere are described by emergingnorth.com as: “Most certainly ones to watch” with a: “huge future” to come.
Other bands playing the festival Cupids, Bang Bang Romeo, and No Hot Ashes have been featured on fredperry.com’s list of bands which are going to: “make it big this year”.
The organisers are all relatively local.
Abi says: “I am from Manchester, Miriam is from Germany but moved to Manchester in September, and Nicole is from St Helens.”
Ellen says: “My parents moved to a town nearby Manchester called when I was 10. Manchester was my nearest city during my teenage years when I was really discovering myself, and my passion for music. It’s a great city for it.”
Both Abi and Miriam study Music Business at BIMM which is Europe’s leading contemporary music college, with an institute in Manchester.
“We started brainstorming our ideal line up for a small festival and wrote it all down just for a laugh. It wasn’t until we woke up the next day that we thought hang on a minute… we can make this happen” says Ellen.
Ellen says: “All the promotion so far has been via social media.
“We’ve all got quite a big following on our personal accounts totalling 5083 on Twitter, 4604 on Instagram, and then all of our Facebook friends too, which means that we’ve been able to reach out to a lot of people.”
In keeping with the theme of passionate young women, the festival logo was created by 21 year old illustrator, and Manchester School of Art student Eve Bridges. Eve is currently designing the posters. The festival logo depicts the worker bee symbol which represents the city’s industry.
Most of the reactions they have received, mainly on twitter, have been positive:
However, there have been a few negative comments from people who think the organisers are too young.
“Someone commented that their band wouldn’t be allowed to play because ‘they’re not in college’” says Ellen.
She says “we are not trying to isolate anyone, and it’s definitely not an age related thing. It’s just that a lot of up and coming musicians are young and we have to appeal to a certain audience. Either way, we won’t let it get us down. We know we can do this!”
Kashmere’s Joey says: “booking two completely perfect capacity venues, booking bands because of their music not the amount of tickets they can sell, and actually booking two amazing headline acts makes this festival so much more special and explains why it’s already becoming a success for them!
“I think it’s a festival that will be growing in the future.”
Ellen says: “We’re not about the profit. We just want to throw a big party with our favourite bands and share their music. Any money made will be reinvested to do it all again next year.”
When In Manchester is being held on Saturday April 16th at Gullivers, and The Castle Hotel on Oldham Street in the Northern Quarter. Doors are open from 2.30pm, and tickets are on sale until the end of January from Skiddle.
When In Manchester’s line up is as follows:
Bang Bang Romeo
THE CASTLE HOTEL
No Hot Ashes