What does 2018 and beyond hold for Hull?

Published: Tuesday 28th November 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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As Hull’s year as the UK City of Culture draws to close, Substance explores what the future holds for the city.

We spoke with Hull 2017 Producer, Martin Atkinson, to find out more about this thought-provoking and hugely entertaining event.

There’s so much going on as part of Substance, can you talk us through some of the key highlights?

The Substance Future Forum is a brilliant creative inquiry into the culture, creativity and future of the North. There will be around 15 very timely and relevant sessions starting at 9:30am this Wednesday.

The talks stretch across the Hull Marina area and will ask questions about the future of arts, culture and technology. For example, how art can save the NHS, how Galway is preparing for its year in the spotlight as the European Capital of Culture, and why Hull raised more corporate money for 2017 than the London Olympics did for the Cultural Olympiad.

On Saturday 9 December, Substance Live will offer a visually spectacular evening with an all-female line-up. Hull City Hall will look very different to how it has ever looked before. We chose the artists deliberately because the people who are being played, quoted and successful in the North at the moment are women. We didn’t feel like this was being recognised fully anywhere else. The night will be a celebration of northern music.

The Substance Film Festival runs from Friday 1 to Tuesday 5 December. We have programmed it in collaboration with Aesthetica Short Film Festival and Hull Independent Cinema. Aesthetica is a BAFTA-recognised event and the team has picked out an array of films that examine the future and how the North could stand as a global force during the next few years.

There’s also A Colossal Wave! by Marshmallow Laser Feast and Where Do We Go from Here? by Jason Bruges Studio. The robots at Hull Minster will start to make more sense as Substance progresses.

Wow, it sounds incredible! So, what do you think the future holds for Hull?

Hull is very nimble, so I feel that it will adapt and change to whatever the future throws at it. Cities like Hull will be the pioneers in terms of culture, tech and the arts.

Working with the C4DI on the Future Forum has made me a lot more aware of just how incredibly progressive this city is and what it has to offer the world.

It’s insane the amount of uncelebrated but creative talent that gold building houses! The C4DI welcomes very skilled people who are either just leaving university, coming to the city or want to start a new business, and provides them with a desk and space to collaborate. It’s wonderful. Seeing people work together and innovate at the C4DI shows that Hull has a very bright future in terms of its tech and digital sector.

Lastly, why should people come along to some of the Substance events?

Firstly, the Future Forum is going to be an excellent opportunity to meet people who you may not get to talk to otherwise. It has a very broad reach and is set against the backdrop of regeneration. You’re going to be engrossed all day at this unique conference.

Meanwhile, Substance Live is going to be a spectacle, both visually and audibly. I’ve never seen a bill quite like it. Even BBC Radio 6 Music couldn’t quite believe the progressive and impressive line-up we have in one evening when they first announced it to the public.

Finally, Substance will be beautiful, alarming and striking.

Substance runs from Wednesday 29 November until Sunday 10 December. You can find out more information on the Hull 2017 website.

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Published: Tuesday 28th November 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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