Manchester International Festival hailed a recession-busting success

Organisers of Manchester International Festival have revealed impressive figures, with 230,000 people turning up to the biennial event.

Manchester International Festival hailed a recession busting success
Manchester International Festival hailed a recession busting success

Initial evaluations show that the festival, which took place from 2-19 July, increased its economic impact from £28.8m in 2007 to £35.7m.

Local arts organisations were also more involved this year, with 12 local co-productions, compared with two in 2007, and 172 performances overall, involving 331 volunteers.

Attendance was also up, with 231,455 people attending the festival, a 10% increase on the inaugural festival figures.

"We congratulate the festival team on delivering an event that raised the profile of the city and made a significant economic and social contribution, and look forward to another exciting festival in 2011," said Manchester City Council leader Sir Richard Leese.

Highlights of the festival included Rufus Wainwright's debut opera Prima Donna; Elbow and the Hallé Symphony Orchestra teaming up for a musical love letter to Manchester; and a double-bill featuring electro pioneers Steve Reich and Kraftwerk.

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