IF you have a sense of adventure
IF you want a family day out
IF you love live music
IF you like a good laugh
IF you want breathtaking shows
IF you want to see a different side to Milton Keynes
“It’s summer and you’re hungry for sidesplitting comedy, provocative exhibitions, stonking bands, zany street theatre, acrobats, fireworks and all sorts of unpredictable happenings popping up in unexpected places. What other metropolis in Britain could give you such a feast of cutting edge culture?”
IF: Milton Keynes International Festival has been transforming Central Milton Keynes with a world-class, multi-arts programme of extraordinary events in unusual places and public spaces since 2010.
“To have more than 90,000 people engaging in the arts across the city during 10 days is an outstanding achievement. We set out to support a series of exciting and innovative arts events that would show Milton Keynes in a new light, support the city’s visitor economy and encourage more people to discover that the arts are for them. We are delighted with the results.”
Produced by internationally renowned music organisation The Stables, the Festival is underpinned by an ongoing theme of sound and music. Over 10 days, the high quality programme features artists and companies from across the world and consists of largescale outdoor events, international productions, a highly decorated ‘Spiegeltent’ hosting comedy, cabaret and live music, pop-up performances and events designed to take place in specific buildings or public spaces.
Arts Council South East
The Festival has a growing reputation for also presenting UK premieres, commissioning new work and embedding an Artist-In-Residence into its programme. IF is delivered every two years with funding from Arts Council England and Milton Keynes Council, and support from businesses, trusts and foundations.
“Spirals of fire, plumes of fire and strange spherical braziers like red planets. It was amazing: like some strange medieval pageant.” The Observer
“IF: Milton Keynes International Festival is growing with each edition, and we are delighted to see it playing an increasingly strategic and important role in Milton Keynes’ cultural life as well as raising the city’s profile nationally and internationally.”
“ To be part of a brand new festival in Milton Keynes, an international festival, is a wonderful opportunity.” Dame Evelyn Glennie “With a vision to create 10 extraordinary days that use the city as a stage, the Festival showcases incredible artists and events in an accessible way to create life-long memories that people can cherish and share. In addition, the Festival’s role is to raise the ‘artistic adventure’ of Milton Keynes, surprising its residents and visitors, and providing a creative springboard for future artistic activity and engagement.
Produced by The Stables, the Festival is an important event that is now central to what our organisation does, extending the venue’s reach into the city and beyond. Whilst drawing on The Stables reputation as a world class music organisation, and benefiting from its relationships with the music industry, the Festival has a distinct brand of its own. Focusing on high quality, contemporary international and professional artistic endeavour IF seeks to engage people with music and sound in surprising ways through a varied programme that encompasses jawdropping international spectacles such as the Magical Menagerie (2010), Carabosse Fire Gardens (2012) and As The World Tipped (2012) to small-scale intimate events.
In 2012 – a hugely memorable year for the UK – the Festival worked with LOCOG (London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games) and was part of the London 2012 Festival presenting the UK premiere of Cambodian production Rouge, Turner prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller’s Sacrilege and The Lone Twin Boat Project. We were also delighted to see The Stables Honorary Patron and 2010 Festival highlight artist Dame Evelyn Glennie taking centre stage at the Official Opening of the Olympic Games. The Festival is always full of surprises and we invite you to reflect on our achievements to date and to look forward to our next 10 amazing days when you can experience happenings, events and installations where you wouldn’t normally expect to find them and do things you wouldn’t usually imagine yourself doing. We could not present such a large-scale event without the commitment of our funders and partners, and we hope to work with these supporters to further develop the Festival going forward. Our thanks go to Arts Council England, Milton Keynes Council, our corporate partners and many supporters who make the impossible possible.” “ Monica Ferguson, Festival Director and Chief Executive of The Stables
As The World Tipped, photography by Mark McNulty
“I was pleased to hear about the high level of volunteer support for the Festival – further evidence that through IF the Milton Keynes community has been able to celebrate and demonstrate its strong cultural identity and can-do spirit–this is what cities are made of. The legacy will undoubtedly be long-lived.” David Hill, Chief Executive, Milton Keynes Council
“The Festival is a key factor in driving the international development of Milton Keynes as one of the world’s most innovative new cities – helping to invigorate its cultural identity, build its reputation as a visitor and investor destination, and enhancing the local economy by over £4 million per Festival.”
Inspiring “I am passionate about Milton Keynes and proud to be the Chair of The Stables Events Board which oversees IF: Milton Keynes International Festival. As one of the UK’s newest towns, Milton Keynes has always been progressive and futureforward in its thinking. The fastest growing city in the UK over the last decade, Milton Keynes leads the way in business and commerce – and people who live here will not have a negative word said about the place. When first created in 2010, the Festival established a ‘new tradition’ by way of a responsive, innovative, high quality event that linked tourism, business, culture and people together. IF had arrived at exactly the right moment with exactly the right ingredients to support the city’s economic growth at a time of national financial austerity. The Festival has had a major impact on the city – drawing in visitors from all over the country, overseas and Milton Keynes, and encouraging them to try something new. I’ll never forget the sight of literally thousands and thousands of people flooding into Campbell Park to see La Compagnie Carabosse’s Fire Gardens in Summer 2012 or the crowds flocking into an unoccupied supermarket to see Janek Schaefer’s contemporary art installation – a surprise hit of the 2010 Festival.
Lifelong memories are made of events like these and I call on everyone living and working in the city, as well as organisations based in Milton Keynes – particularly those with national or international roots and connections – to continue to pledge your support for IF. In doing so, you are making an investment in the city, its economy, its people and its future as well as in one of the most exciting new international Festivals worldwide. The coming years will doubtless bring fresh challenges and unexpected opportunities, and I know that the Festival will embrace these to offer something even bigger and more exciting as we approach future editions. A recent study of festival cities demonstrated that: ‘Festivals influence people’s idea of a city’– IF: Milton Keynes International Festival has certainly done this in a hugely positive way for Milton Keynes and I hope you will want to be part of this success going forward.” Dr Ann Limb OBE DL, Chair of The Stables Events Limited
£4.2 million Information about IF: 2012
hours given by volunteers
of tickets sold to new customers
people engaged with the Festival
Cultural Olympiad events to celebrate London 2012
of attenders agreed or strongly agreed that they enjoyed IF
of attenders said IF has a positive impact on perceptions of Milton Keynes
more tickets sold in 2012 than 2010
events and exhibition / experience days
Stonehenge created by Turner prize artist Jeremy Deller
of Festival-goers believe that IF raises the profile of Milton Keynes
of Festival-goers said that IF adds to their sense of pride in Milton Keynes
gross economic impact generated by IF
UK premieres and new commissions
of attenders would like to come to the next IF
net direct benefit to Milton Keynes
of the programme is free to experience
new songs commissioned for the Harbour of Songs album www.ifmiltonkeynes.org
£1 million in value of PR coverage generated
What people are saying about IF
“Milton Keynes is now 43 and so venerable that its shopping centre has just been designated a Grade 2 listed building by English Heritage. And as its retail space becomes an official work of architecture the whole town is filled with works of art as I discovered…as we move around the International Festival we’ll find a lot of these exhibits are interactive and particularly designed to get children involved… “ Mark Lawson, BBC Radio 4, Front Row
‘The Festival is FANTASTIC – the best thing about MK, I love it! Had a fab time in 2010, an equally good time in 2012 and I look forward to an even better time in 2014!!!” Festival-goer “The Trust has been involved in a project that has an international reputation. Working with event organisers of the calibre of those involved with the Festival has been very satisfying. The Trust has moved in circles that it has previously only skirted and this has opened doors to other opportunities and projects for the future.”
Partners & Supporters
The Parks Trust Venue Partners
“Congratulations on your wonderful achievement! It was a great experience, with a most compelling programme. The feedback from across the University has been overwhelmingly positive.” The Open University
“We may never look at Milton Keynes in the same way again.”
The Times Trusts, Foundation & International Supporters
“The Festival provided the right platform to reward a group of our loyal John Lewis / Waitrose customers and was an ideal opportunity to extend the John Lewis / Waitrose name in the community.” John Lewis Partnership
“Such has been the success of festivals in raising profile and civic enterprise, it’s not surprising that every town and city wants one. The latest is Milton Keynes and it’s not doing anything by halves. Using the city’s singular urban landscape, IF has melded new commissions and UK premieres.” Lyn Gardner, The Guardian
“I wanted to send praise and congratulations to the whole team for a wonderful Festival. The quality of production throughout the Festival was noticeable – signage (lots of it and nicely designed), great print, a great festival concept that carried through everything. The infrastructure looked and was good quality and clean – plus brilliant and cheerful volunteers.” Caterina Loriggio, Creative Programmer London 2012
THE WAVENDON FOUNDATION
Milton Keynes City Centre Management, Milton Keynes Summer of Culture 2012, Ramada Encore, Yamaha, VW, Taylor Wimpey, River Island, Blum UK The Splinter Group and IT Project Craft Team (both MK Christian Foundation), MK Men in Sheds (supported by Age UK MK), Milton Keynes College Learning Disability Services, briteyellow, Idea Generation, Jardien Michelson, Sumo, Make A Difference IF extends thanks to the many individuals, organisations and companies, staff and volunteers who have worked to make the Festival a success.
IF Official Photographer: Shaun Armstrong. Photography: mubsta.com
IF: Milton Keynes International Festival The Stables Stockwell Lane Wavendon Milton Keynes MK17 8LU T: 01908 280800 E: email@example.com
www.ifmiltonkeynes.org @IFMKfest www.facebook.com/IFMKfest
For further information contact Monica Ferguson, Festival Director and Chief Executive of The Stables. Email firstname.lastname@example.org The Stables Events Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of Wavendon Allmusic Plan Ltd (Reg Charity No 261645) Reg Office: The Stables, Stockwell Lane, Wavendon, Milton Keynes, MK17 8LU. Reg in England No 7097197