Immersive Opera Brings Life, Death and Second Chances to Mayfield Depot at 3pm on 18 November
Five years ago, David Tovey sat on a park bench, homeless and suicidal. The man who sat next to him saved his life. On 18 November, David and the Museum of Homelessness bring this story to Manchester’s iconic Mayfield Depot in a new production developed by people who’ve faced homelessness.
Featuring models, poets, actors and musicians, Man on Bench is an opera like no other, a fairytale that places high fashion firmly in the hands of society’s most rejected people.
Rhymestein, one of the stars of Man on Bench
We are very happy that David has received support from Unlimited to deliver his vision for Man on Bench but we need your help! We have been offered the iconic Mayfield Depot to stage the event, placing David where he belongs artistically, alongside giants like Massive Attack and Manchester International Festival.
The first ever Man on Bench, held on London's Southbank after David was refused access to arts venues
However, this has meant that the event is more expensive to produce! Museum of Homelessness is donating time and expertise to the project and is not receiving a penny of the funds.
We believe that artists should be paid fairly and we have made that happen, but we also need your help to make the event a success!
How you can help!
We are seeking additional funds to help buy equipment and materials for the event. We also need additional funds to help us look after our army of amazing volunteers, many of whom are homeless or ex-homeless. Mayfield Depot will be COLD in November. Can you help us that little bit extra to look after our volunteers?
£10 Will help with our costs and you will receive a signed postcard of the Man on Bench picture signed by David.
£20 Will cover some of the costs of the event and we will hand out of emergency blankets to people experiencing homelessness after the show. You will also receive a postcard of the Man on Bench picture signed by David.
£60 Will buy a tent and emergency blanket and these will be given out after the show. You will also receive one of a limited edition of signed prints with the Man on Bench picture.
£100 Will help us provide accommodation for our volunteers to help with performance. It will also help with the costs already described.
£500 Will contribute hugely to all of the above and for this amount, David will create a unique one-off A2 sketch for you.
Further information about the event.
In early 2018, David received support as an emerging artist from Unlimited to stage Man on a Bench is part of his ongoing collaboration with the Museum of Homelessness, an independent national charity run by people who have experienced homelessness, and is dedicated to sharing art, histories and culture to change society for the better. Museum of Homelessness will be acting as David’s pro bono producers for this show.
The performance comes at a time of huge awareness and political focus on homelessness in Greater Manchester. Andy Burnham, the Mayor of the city region has made a personal pledge – and donated a proportion of his salary – to addressing the issue. The number of people sleeping rough in Manchester has increased seven-fold since 2010.
This performance questions stereotypes about people who’ve been homeless and shows the beauty of second chances. The performance rounds off the With One Voice International Arts and Homelessness Summit & Festival – a week in which events will be taking place around Manchester that celebrate the power of art in tackling homelessness.
Book your free ticket here
Find out more about David Tovey and the Museum of Homelessness