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Sponsors and partners announced as part of festival team

A number of new partnerships have been announced as part of the festival celebrating a year since the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

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Birmingham University will contribute to the Birmingham Festival programme with free exhibitions and public workshops hosted at The Exchange, based in the historic old municipal bank located in Centenary Square.

The venue will also provide a hub for wider Festival activities including visitor receptions and back of house operations.

Professor Richard Black, Pro-Vice Chancellor at Birmingham University, said: "The University is proud to have been an official partner of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and is now very excited to be building on the cultural legacy in the city as a principal partner of Birmingham Festival 23.

"The event supports the objectives of Culture Forward, a new initiative that aims to bring the University, the city, and Birmingham’s cultural organisations into even closer and more creative conjunction, alongside our work to engage with the public and our communities as part of our civic commitment."

Hollywood Monster has been named as Birmingham Festival 23’s Presenting Partner.

As the largest wide format printing and signage contractor in the city, they will provide profile enhancing and impactful visual displays across the site in the lead up to, and for the duration of, the Festival.

Hollywood Monster CEO Simon McKenzie said: "As a Birmingham-based business, we were delighted to play our part in the Commonwealth Games last year supporting our long-standing customer CSM Live, in elements of this city dressing, helping to showcase everything that our great city has to offer to a worldwide audience.

"Birmingham Festival 23 is set to be another great opportunity to promote our vibrant and diverse culture and the communities that live and work here in the West Midlands, and we are honoured to be participating.

"Our local teams are already busy working on graphics and designs that will be displayed proudly throughout our hometown."

The champions of Birmingham Festival 23 are Colmore Business Improvement District, whose Food Festival takes place the weekend before Birmingham Festival 23 starts; West Midlands Growth Company, which through Visit Birmingham campaigns will promote a wider regional focus; and Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce who will forge links for the Festival with Birmingham’s business communities.

Will Mauchline, Executive Director of Birmingham Festival 23 said: "Partnerships take many forms including financial investment and support in kind.

"What they all have in common is a focus on supporting the success of this year’s event by making the programme, the city and audience experiences a true celebration of Birmingham’s creativity and talent, helping to build awareness and to help drive visitors from further afield to enjoy the amazing cultural offer the Festival represents.

"We are grateful to all our amazing supporters for their energy and enthusiasm."

Commissioned and supported by Birmingham City Council to celebrate the city’s creativity, and as a sign of its ongoing commitment to accessible culture for everyone, Birmingham Festival 23 will take over Centenary Square from Friday, July 28 to Sunday, August 6.

A 10 day programme of free events that showcases the City’s rich cultural offer will be announced in June.

When the Festival was announced, an open call to submit ideas for the Made In Brum strand of the programme was announced and the full Made In Brum programme will be announced in June.

The Festival will echo the city-centre experience of the Games with live music and performance, creative and participatory activities, and big-screen content to conjure the shared experiences, magic and memories of the summer of 2022.

It also serves to celebrate the city’s creativity through programming committed to diversity, inclusion and homegrown talent and will be another bold showcase of Birmingham’s talent, character and reputation as a world-class destination for major events.

Steven Knight CBE, and former gold-medal winning Team England Netball Captain, Ama Agbeze are Patrons of the festival, signifying the city’s cultural and sporting ambitions.

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