2015 proved to be one of the most successful years to date for the City of Liverpool’s culture and tourism scene – not only through Culture Liverpool’s city-wide campaigns and events, which you can find out more about below – but also through our 36 CLIP-funded organisations, made up of a variety of arts institutions, from grass-roots level to internationally-acclaimed. 2015 was also the year that Liverpool became a UNESCO City of Music.
One Magnificent City
Three ocean Queens, a unique audio experience, a maritime festival and a cultural exchange weekend – just some of the ingredients proving Liverpool’s magnificent credentials in 2015.
One Magnificent City (OMC) was a seven-week programme of events, which launched on Friday 15 May 2015 with the hugely popular LightNight and ran right through to Transatlantic 175, which took place from 4 – 5 July 2015 and incorporated our Guinness World Record-breaking The Very Big Catwalk.
Cunard 175: The Three Queens
From Saturday 23 – Tuesday 26 May 2015, Liverpool – continuing under the umbrella of One Magnificent City – celebrated Cunard Line’s 175th anniversary by welcoming The Three Queens: Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria.
Monday 25 May 2015 is the only time to date that these three majestic liners graced the River Mersey together – such a spectacle was always destined to attract a huge number of people, with over a million witnesses in attendance on the day, as the ships performed choreographed manoeuvres on the river, which included 180-degree turns. While the fleet carried out its remarkable display, the Red Arrows performed a fly-past.
The Amazing Graces
Prior to the meeting of The Three Queens on the River Mersey, Liverpool’s very own Three Graces – the Royal Liver Building, the Cunard Building and the Port of Liverpool Building – were transformed with a stunning projection show on Saturday 23 May 2915. Capturing a sense of the sea and embracing the spirit of adventure, this spectacle celebrated Liverpool’s history and championed its role as a modern and progressive city.
The performance included a Sea of Faces, hundreds of local people were photographed, and their images were used to tell the story of the cities unique and rich cultural heritage, embodying the spirit of Liverpool.
Amazing Graces was curated and produced by The Colour Project in collaboration with Liverpool City Council and Face Lab at Liverpool John Moores University. The narrative for the show was developed in partnership with Hope Street, a Liverpool based company that specialises in developing artists, art forms and arts in the community. The average faces of Merseyside were produced by Face Lab, a Liverpool School of Art & Design research group.
International Mersey River Festival 2015
Another event offering from our One Magnificent City programme was the International Mersey River Festival, which ran from Friday 5 June – Sunday 7 June alongside the Music on the Waterfront concert – the full line up of which can be found here.
Among the ships on display in 2015 were Morgenster, Training Ship Atyla, Zebu, Irene, Maybe, Glaciere, Bessie Ellen, The Kathleen & May, Marissa (University of Liverpool Research Vessel), Pelican of London, HMS Ramsey, Liverpool Yacht Club Sailing Regatta, as well as an array of beautiful canal boats.
Liverpool International Music Festival 2015
Yet another One Magnificent City event came in the shape of Culture Liverpool’s third installment of Liverpool International Music Festival, which took place on the Summer Bank Holiday of 2015 (Saturday 29 – Monday 31 August).
Among the star-studded line-up for #LIMF2015 were Basement Jaxx, Labrinth, Echo & the Bunnymen, Katy B, Naughty Boy, Laura Mvula, Becky Hill, The Real Thing, Space, Louis Berry, Tea Street Band, Hooton Tennis Club and MiC Lowry to name a few.
14-18 Now: Weeping Window and
Wave at St George’s Hall
The Weeping Window and Wave sculpture, produced by 14-18 NOW, took place at St George’s Hall from 7 November 2015 – 17 January 2016, paying tribute to fallen servicemen and women during the First World War.
Weeping Window is a cascade comprising several thousand handmade ceramic poppies seen pouring from a high window to the ground below; Wave is a sweeping arch of bright red poppy heads suspended on towering stalks. These two sculptures, by artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper, marking the centenary of the outbreak of war, were brought to audiences at venues across the country as part of the 14-18 NOW programme.