We are delighted to announce we have been shortlisted for the national Museums at Night Connect10 competition in partnership with Touchstones Rochdale. We now need your votes to bring acclaimed contemporary artist Susan Forsyth to Rochdale!
We are competing against the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Sheffield’s Kelham Island Museum and Liverpool’s Victoria Museum Gallery and the decision will go to a public vote. Voting opens at 11am on Tuesday 19th Feb and closes on Tuesday 5th March at 5pm. To vote for Rochdale click here The winner will be announced on the 7th March.
If our bid is successful, a ‘Zusammen Choir Procession’, led by Susan Forsyth, and involving the whole community will take place around Rochdale Town Centre. The procession route will take in St Chad’s Church, moving through Broadfield Park, to Touchstones Arts and Heritage Centre, along the Esplanade, passing the iconic Rochdale Town Hall, travelling up Yorkshire Street and finally ending at the Toad Lane Conservation area, home of St Mary’s in the Baum Church and the Rochdale Pioneers Museum. Susan Forsyth was shortlisted for the Jerwood Sculpture Prize in 2009.
Zusammen means ‘together’, and the candlelit procession is fitting with the Pioneers story and struggles during the 1840’s where 28 people worked together to change their lives by opening their store selling pure food at fair prices and honest weights and measures. The store opened on 21 December 1844 and had to be lit by candle light because the gas company refused to supply the Pioneers with gas.
The procession will involve local school children, individuals, community groups, choirs and musicians performing songs that highlight the legendary tales of St Chad’s Goblin, John Bright’s campaign to end slavery, the mysterious tale of The Baum rabbit, Touchstones, the Rochdale Pioneers and the global co-operative movement.
The Connect10 competition invited museums up and down the country to bid for one of 10 leading artists to stage an innovative night time event during the Museums at Night Festival being held across the UK during the evenings of Thursday, Friday and Saturday 16 – 18 May.
Our bid has been developed in partnership with Touchstones Rochdale/Link4Life, Rochdale Town Centre Management Company and the Rochdale Borough High Street Foundation. Regardless of the outcome of the Connect10 competition, a series of events will take place throughout the Museums at Night Festival including a proposed Twilight Market and extended opening times until 8pm in the towns’ arts and heritage venues including Touchstones, Rochdale Town Hall and the Rochdale Pioneers Museums.
The Connect10 competition is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.