News | Wednesday, 11th July 2018

BBC Philharmonic perform macabre musical medley for biggest ever Gothic Manchester Festival

City also hosts hundreds of experts in horror, literature and art for this year's International Gothic Association Conference

Gothic skull
Sixth annual Gothic Manchester Festival is bigger than ever before

A bone-chilling medley of the spookiest musical scores will be performed by the BBC Philharmonic at a one-off concert to celebrate the largest ever Gothic Manchester Festival.

Bigger and badder than ever before, the sixth annual Gothic Manchester Festival (1-5th August) welcomes lovers of the dark and macabre from all over the world as the city also hosts the International Gothic Association Conference for the first time.

Hundreds of experts in horror, gothic literature, architecture, art and music will descend on Manchester for days of discussion for the world’s biggest academic Gothic conference.  

To mark the occasion, festival organisers the Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies has also put on a jam-packed programme of spooky summer public events. 

Landmark collaboration

It includes the landmark collaboration with the BBC Philharmonic for the ‘Scoring Fear’ event at Stoller Hall. The concert will feature music by an eclectic mix of composers whose work invokes suspense, awe, terror, and even horror, including Bernard Herrmann and Béla Bartók. This performance will be recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio 3’s Sound of Cinema.

The Gothic Manchester Festival, first held in 2013, is the eerie offspring of the Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies at Manchester Metropolitan University. The Centre’s mission is to promote the study of the Gothic nationally and internationally, and bring the dark delights of Gothic culture to a wider audience.

The theme of this year’s Gothic Manchester Festival is ‘Gothic Hybridities’ – with a range of events exploring how the Gothic stitches together a dark and delicious patchwork of different influences, aesthetics and emotions into a shadowy, grotesque and strangely beautiful edifice.

For those who like to walk on the dark side, this is hugely exciting. We think of this summer's events, in fact, as the Gothic coming home!

Dr Linnie Blake, Reader at Manchester Metropolitan University and organiser of the Festival, said: “As the Manchester Centre for Gothic Studies plays host to the prestigious International Gothic Association conference, over 300 academics of a dark persuasion will descend on the city from every corner of the world.

“They will participate not only in academic discussion and debate, but in the public events and entertainments offered by the Gothic Manchester Festival too. For Manchester now lies at the fast-beating heart of Gothic Studies and Gothic culture, the Centre being a key player in the Haunt Manchester Network and research and teaching in the field.

“For those who like to walk on the dark side, this is hugely exciting. We think of this summer's events, in fact, as the Gothic coming home!” 

The packed public events programme is full of Gothic intrigue, including:

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