Calvin Po

Has all the charisma of Chernobyl: Manchester’s Aviva Studios reviewed

What goes on inside is what will matter for this new cultural space – and Danny Boyle's opening show was spectacular

Savaged by critics and citizens alike for its ugliness: Aviva Studios in Manchester. Photo by Marco Cappelletti. Courtesy of OMA and Factory International

There is a (possibly apocryphal) story about William Morris, where he spends most of his time in Paris inside the Eiffel Tower’s restaurant because ‘that is the only place where you can’t see the damned thing’. Aviva Studios risks a similar fate. Designed by architects OMA as the permanent performance venue for the Manchester International Festival and headquarters for its organisers, Factory International, it’s been savaged by critics and citizens alike for its ugliness.

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