I forgot to post the link reporting on the visit to New York by the Manchester International Festival people which was covered in the New Yorker magazine.
There's a link to it here.
And a flavour of it here:
To promote the gravitas of a city best known for one of its soccer squads, for the Madchester pop-music scene of yore, and for its tendency to be drenched in slow, steady rain, Poots had imported a team of seasoned professionals. “Manchester is the first city of the modern age,” Nick Johnson, the chairman of a company called Marketing Manchester, said. “It’s where Marx met Engels; it’s where Rolls met Royce. The industrial revolution started in Manchester. Manchester was the first city to invent the computer. I’ll have to get back to you on who that was, exactly.” (Arguably, the first computer was built in Philadelphia, though the first electronic stored-program computer can definitively be said to be a Mancunian invention. Marx made Engels’s acquaintance in Paris; however, the two did frequently convene in the North of England.)
It's not a particularly flattering piece, but the writer spots the fact that Manchester does run a genuine risk of believing its own hype a lot of the time. The festival should be good. I'm particularly looking forward to seeing Blue Nile in concert and seeing Anthony Wilson back to his best in a mass debate on whether London is bad for Britain.