MAC, Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham, B12 9QH

At 10 o’clock on Saturday May 1st, MAC finally reopens its doors after a two-year, £15m refurbishment giving everyone the chance to join in the fun and get to know the new MAC. With three days of activities, workshops events and performances, there will be something for everyone.

Saturday will see the first members of the public entering the new purpose-built gallery to see the opening exhibition plug in. Examining Birmingham’s changing role as a global city encountering change, exhibits include pictures and artefacts from Birmingham’s manufacturing heritage, including the sign from the now demolished HP Sauce factory in Aston, a Morris Minor and photos from Stuart Whipps’s series Ming Jue documenting Rover production moving from Longbridge to Nanjing.

Members of the public have also contributed to the show, with a newly commissioned sound piece from Peter Cusack examining people’s favourite sounds of Birmingham, and the Birmingham word cloud – a visual representation of words people associate with Birmingham submitted through social media site Twitter.

In the evening the refitted theatre is hosting its first ever standing gig with Misty’s Big Adventure, Vijay Kishore and Joe Broughton and Kevin Dempsey. Retractable seating means that the theatre is

Out on the relandscaped Terrace on Sunday, critically acclaimed dance troupe Motionhouse will be conducting open rehearsals for their spectacular new piece Cascade, commissioned by mac. One of mac’s associate artists, Motionhouse will be showing off their extraordinary dance and aerial skills as they adventure into a world of water, giving visitors the chance to get a sneak preview of the show developing and put questions to the dancers and choreographer Kevin Finnan.

Monday sees the grand finale of The City Sings, an anthem for mac composed by Helen Ottaway of Artmusic, which will ring out across the city throughout the day with trumpeters, a bus load of singing school children, the Bournville Carillon and many more all joining in. At 4pm the event will culminate in a mass performance as the various groups gather from across the park to celebrate mac’s reopening.

Throughout the weekend there will also be a host of free taster sessions covering the whole range of the Learning & Participation programme, trailers and short films in the refurbished cinema and performances and workshops hosted by South Asian arts organisation Sampad.

Dorothy Wilson, Chief Executive at mac said: “Over ten years in the making, the Building Project has created a dynamic and exciting arts centre that offers vastly improved spaces for audiences and artists alike, I can’t wait to show people around this May Bank Holiday Weekend.”

Highlights of the weekend include:

Amplifying the Map – Guided Tours
Enjoy a range of distinct trails; follow a fantastic audio trail adventure or stroll from bridge to bridge on a journey made for those who care for Cannon Hill Park.

Misty’s Big Adventure, Vijay Kishore, Joe Broughton & Kevin Dempsey
Sat 1 May, 8pm £14
Misty’s Big Adventure, bring their hip hop beats, screwy jazz, pop, scratching and electric toys. They share the event with rising start Vijay Kishore alongside virtuosi of guitar and fiddle, Kevin Dempsey and Joe Broughton.

Creating Cascade Open Rehearsals
Sunday 2 May
Take a sneak preview of Motionhouse’s next outdoor spectacle that promises to be a display of extraordinary dance and aerial skills. Watch how the show develops and put your questions to the choreographer Kevin Finnan.

plug in
Saturday 1 May – Monday 30 August
Plug in, guest curated by artist Simon Poulter, celebrates the opening of mac’s enviable new gallery space by exploring the changing role of our home city.

The Sampad Story
Saturday 1 May – Monday 30 August
A retrospective exhibition that takes you on a journey of South Asian arts in the region since 1990, told through the eyes of the artists, audiences and communities from the past twenty years.

The City Sings, a new work written by Helen Ottaway to celebrate the re-opening of mac
Monday 3 May
Join in as musicians and singers from all over Birmingham appear together to perform in the extraordinary event.

In addition, as part of the opening weekend you will be able to find out more about our Learning and Participation programme. With a wide range of free workshops, artists workshops and artist demonstrations you can take a sneaky peek and sample what’s to come!

What’s more, throughout the weekend there will be an opportunity to re-introduce yourself to our Cinema, see some trailers and shorts and catch up on some of the films that have been released while the mac has been closed. Highlights include A Single Man, It’s Complicated and I am Love.


Cannon Hill Park
Birmingham B12 9QH

Registered Company no 718349
Registered Charity no 528979
VAT no 818 2851 16

Supporting Birmingham’s Bid to become UK City of Culture 2013