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Manchester International Festival

Manchester International Festival (MIF) is the world’s first festival of original, new work and special events, staged every two years in Manchester, UK. MIF launched in 2007 as an artist-led festival presenting new works from across the spectrum of performing arts, visual arts and popular culture.

We believe in cultural democracy – it is everyone’s right to help shape our culture. Our artists, audiences, participants and staff reflect the diversity of our global city. We involve a wide-ranging community in our decisions, programmes and plans. We create meeting spaces for the city and the world, and a generous welcome to all.

Our training academy develops the next generation of technicians, producers, and arts professionals – and provides support for young people from all backgrounds to forge a career in the creative industries. We provide emerging artists with the opportunity to see world-leaders at work.

Our work is international in spirit and practice. We collaborate with venues, festivals and companies across the world to commission artists together. Many of our productions tour globally, and we share ideas, projects and training with our peers worldwide.

MIF will also be the operator for The Factory, the new world-class cultural space being developed in the heart of Manchester, designed by internationally-renowned architects Rem Koolhaas’ OMA. Due to open in 2021, The Factory will commission, present and produce a year-round programme, featuring new work from the world’s greatest artists and offering a space to make, explore and experiment.


Inclusive features

More about Manchester International Festival

Brand Value

Extraordinary  Open - Inventive - Determined - International


Extraordinary - We step out of the everyday:

We want to encourage people from other sectors, to apply for our roles. You don’t have to come from an arts background to join MIF – the diversity in experience our employees bring is what enriches our workforce. We are the 2017 winner of The North West Cultural Education Awards for Inclusive Partnership, working with our partners Manchester City Council and England Arts Council to produce content that represents our local community.

The Young People’s Forum is a collective of Greater Manchester residents aged 16-28 who regularly inform the development of MIF and The Factory, bringing new ideas and insight on how our future development can cater to young people. Any new ideas introduced we act on them, because we know the importance of collaboration

We are the place where the art of the future is made - MIF received funding to take part in the Audiences of the Future challenge funded by Innovate UK. The aim of the fund is to develop the arts sector, so it becomes a leading innovator in immersive experiences. Most recently, we used this support for the hardware and software development for DYSTOPIA987 as part of MIF19.

Our training and apprenticeship programme The Factory Academy Training Scheme, backed by leading Manchester arts organisations, is our vision for The Factory. Providing local jobseekers with the foundation and insight into the workings of the creative industries, who are then supported to apply for roles with either us or at our partner organisations. We believe it is important to support local talent and potential, especially as it will only enhance our diverse workforce.


Open  we are generous and welcome to everyone:

Unconscious bias – to ensure our recruitment process is fair and we only recruit those with the relevant skills and experience, we anonymise all application submissions and our interview panels must undergo our Unconscious Bias training. We are in the process of delivering this to all our staff, as we believe it is important to be knowledgeable on inclusive practices and code of conduct. We have an accessible office by lift and ramp, a newly appointed Access Officer, who provides us with specific counsel on how MIF can be more accessible in all aspects of work. Our Stonewall Diversity Champion and Disability Confident accreditations are testament to the support we provide and our culture; we are always happy to make reasonable adjustments.


Inventive  We explore new ways of working; thinking and creating – we embrace the new and the different.

We are undergoing a significant period of organisational change in the run up to The Factory. This is an exciting time with many new roles being created. We have a ‘The Factory’ staff focus group to inform staff of every step of the journey and encourage contributions on the new working space. Our Access working group includes Greater Manchester residents who vary in access needs, focused on giving insight on how The Factory can be accessible and disability friendly. Our staff regularly organise visits to other arts and culture offices and venues to gain ideas on how we use the working space and how it will operate, which includes trips abroad and attending networking conferences (all expenses paid).


Determined  we are brave, at times, wilful. We will always do things differently:

Much of our works are either UK or Europe exclusives, some even being world exclusive. We want to be a game-changer and leader in skills, and our Jerwood Creative Fellows, a new creative development programme is designed to do exactly that. Six Greater Manchester-based artists joined our creative team for an MIF project. They were in close quarters to how work was created in our unique Festival environment, with a focus on the kind of cross-artform collaboration that’s become an MIF trademark. Jerwood Fellows is in partnership with Jerwood Arts, started in 2017 and has continued each festival cycle, giving bursaries to develop creatives and provide them with opportunities to observe and to learn from the creators of some of MIF’s most ambitious projects.


International  We share ideas, projects, skills and training with our peers world-wide, bringing together extraordinary teams of artists from all over the world.

Our team of producers visit other artists and artistic shows, which range from Pakistan to New York (all expenses paid).

We host a weekly Ideas Breakfast where our staff share, they’ve seen or done in arts and culture realm, that would be good for MIF21 or The Factory. Our Creative Engagement team work on engaging with Greater Manchester and ensuring the content we provide is accessible to everyone. Through their initiatives such Festival In My House, we are able to source new ideas for our future with input from the local community.

Our social media channels are constantly updated to showcase our work and keep the public informed on our organisational progress, especially in the lead up to The Factory. We have staff ambassadors that will visit other arts and culture events and report back on our social media

Diversity & Inclusion

MIF is committed to equality for everyone and we encourage you to apply no matter what your age, caring responsibilities, disability, gender, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief and sexual orientation. MIF is an inclusive employer. We value difference and recruit by merit based on fair and open competition. We welcome candidates from all backgrounds and from all sectors.

Benefits at Manchester International Festival

List of all the benefits that Manchester International Festival are offering their employees. Benefits may vary depending on role, location and length of service.

  • Pension Scheme
  • Childcare Vouchers
  • Annual Leave - 25 Days
  • Cycle Scheme
  • Employee Assistance Programme
  • Health & Personal Devolopment
  • Interest-Free Travel Season Ticket Loan

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