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Manchester is a city in North West of England.


Visual arts

Chris Ofili are L. S. Lowry two internationally acclaimed painters from Manchester.

Gay and lesbian

Manchester has claimed to have the UK's largest gay population outside of London, and has a self-styled Gay Village. Centred on the Canal Street area the Gay Village is home to numerous shops, restaurants, bars and clubs. On the last weekend in August it hosts the Manchester Pride Festival (previously known as Mardi Gras and Gayfest).


There has long been a thriving nightclub culture in Manchester. Broadcaster Jimmy Savile is credited as becoming the first modern DJ by using twin turntables for continuous play after he obtained two domestic record decks welded together. He first used this device to play to the public in 1946, at a nightclub called The Ritz on Whitworth Street (which had opened in 1927). Tony Prince is credited as becoming the world's first full-time club DJ in 1964 when Savile, who was then a Mecca manager in Manchester, told him that Top Rank considered him to be the first person to be on their payroll as a pure DJ.

Many teenagers of the 1960s developed a love for Northern Soul, which had as two of its epicentres the Wigan Casino and Manchester's Twisted Wheel Club, and is credited as being instrumental in the development of the Motown Sound.

Rob Gretton, members of New Order (the band formed from the remaining members of Joy Division after singer Ian Curtis' suicide) and Factory Records boss Tony Wilson opened Fac 51 The Hacienda on Whitworth Street in 1982. It quickly became the focus of electronic music and the start of house music, the Madchester sound, and the Ibiza scene, which all came together in the Summer of Love in 1988. The Hacienda was also at the setting of the 2002 movie 24 Hour Party People.

One of the oldest and most diverse venues is the Band on the Wall, a live music venue in the Northern Quarter area of the city. This venue was built around 1862 as the flagship pub of a local brewery; it was originally called The George & Dragon. It got its nickname in the late 1920s or early 1930s from the stage high on the back wall. In 1975 it was taken on by jazz musician Steve Morris and his business partner Frank Cusick, and renamed The Band on the Wall.


For Mancunians, the pop musical heritage of the city has been a source of great pride. The city’s eclectic mix of music has helped to create the sense among its inhabitants that Manchester is the most important city in world music.

Bands who contributed to the "Madchester" music scene include:

The Chemical Brothers (from southern England) formed in Manchester. Also, ex-Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown has forged a successful solo career, as has ex-Smiths leadman Morrissey. Among the others born in the Greater Manchester area are Richard Ashcroft and Jay Kay-the singer and mastermind of the acid jazz band Jamiroquai.


In the 19th century, Manchester figured in novels that discussed the changes that industrialisation had brought to Britain. These included works such as:-

  • Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life (1848) by Elizabeth Gaskell, [1]
  • The Condition of the English Working Class in 1844 written by Friedrich Engels while living and working in Manchester.

Charles Dickens is reputed to have set his novel Hard Times in the city, and while it is partly modelled on Preston, it shows the influence of his friend Elizabeth Gaskell [2].

Anthony Burgess, author of A Clockwork Orange, was born and educated in Manchester. Little Wilson and Big God, the first volume of his autobiography, includes a detailed account of his early life in the city between 1917 and 1940.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Manchester" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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