In the words of Andre 3000 in ‘Ms Jackson’ - "You can plan a pretty picnic, but you can’t predict the weather". A lesson we learnt this weekend with our latest 3-day Birmingham inspired spectacular.
In light of the difficult decision made by the Project Birmingham Team to postpone our event with Medicine bakery and gallery, we thought we’d share some other things we’ve learnt along the way.
Stay tuned for those re-arranged dates - we’ve got still got so much to show you!
1. There is no end to Birmingham’s creative might
Every event we have thrown to date has involved us trying to find the coolest locations possible to host aspiring artists from around the city. We’ve even been lucky to enough to work with partner venues that have overlooked a few specs of paint from live art exhibitions. This time, to launch Medicine’s art gallery space, we decided to share some of our own ideas for art with locals from our community.
The response was phenomenal! Over the years, as our team has grown, so has the network of artists. There have been points where we might have considered having to say no to some, but that has never been our way of doing things. We can’t wait to show you what the people of Birmingham have been up with these projects specifically created for Medicine’s launch.
2. Big names want to play in Birmingham too
Our music Director, Rob Ashby, can always be relied upon to orchestrate one hell of a lineup. I remember the first time Henry Wu played a Forward event at the Hare and Hounds. It was my first time seeing him live and it’s safe to say Room 2 went off. This was the first venture to the midlands for the Peckham icon and the first of the big names to come.
Fast forward to the beginning of 2018, during one of our first meetings leading up to the Medicine event, Mr. Ashby touts the name Alexander Nut as a possibility. Coupled with a line up consisting of Leftfoot, Shadow City and MoodFix, our Friday headliner would have the pleasure of sharing a sound system with some of city’s best DJ collectives.
Whilst it was never meant to be, you can catch Alexander Nut at the Hare and Hounds in the near future. Keep your eyes peeled for tickets! And we hope to have the opportunity to party with him again in the future!
3. You can fit a prison door in a mini cooper (just)
Ok, I won’t go into too much detail because we don’t want to give away the surprise! But if you should have the chance to purchase an antique prison door, but hesitate because you only brought the mini (to the prison door shop?) then do not fear. Because like Top Gear of old, we’ve done the ridiculous experiment for you.
4. One cronut is never enough
One of Medicine’s finest signature bakes, and definitely worth walking through the snow for. A lot of ‘scouting’ visits, also coincidently required a sample of the sweet treats on offer at the city centre bakery.
Nestled alongside the fresh sour dough, brownies and chunky sandwiches, these bad boys are the perfect accompaniment to hot coffee. You can thank us later.
5. Students are awesome
Whilst getting prepped for the event, Community Director James Cronin, was spending some of his evenings at some of the city’s universities. Introducing students from all different disciplines to what Project Birmingham do, we also offered up the opportunity for students to be involved in the event.
Within a matter of weeks, our email inbox had exploded and we had dozens of energetic minds eager to help out. From promotion, curation and artistic creations a number of fantastic individuals were meeting and discussing how we made this event run like clock work.
This city’s vibrancy buzzes in every academic institution and they are a credit to the city. We hope to see all (and more) at the next attempt, if the weather allows, and many events after that.
6. Not all decisions are fun or really what you want
In the 3 years that Project Birmingham has been running we have always appreciated the good fortune that accompanied our events. Looking back to last summer, our event with Old Crown was threatened by rain. Luckily we were blessed with blue skies (a lot of Blue Noses) and a fantastic turn out.
When we were forced to postpone the Friday, everyone in the team held onto the promise a great weekend nevertheless. But worsening conditions, and a sense of responsibility for our guests and artists travelling to the venue, we made the very difficult call.
I know all of us would have walked through the middle of a blizzard, even if it was just us in the room. But we believe the effort and energy from everyone involved deserves a proper audience. So bare with us while we look in our diary’s (making sure we don’t clash with the many other awesome events in Birmingham) and let’s do this - bigger and better.
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