Born at 91 Carisbrook Street in north Manchester’s Harpurhey, John Burgess Wilson, aka Anthony Burgess, would have received a letter from the Queen on 25 February 2017. As part of a year-long celebration of his centenary, the International Anthony Burgess Foundation (where else?) is putting on a choodessny knees-up to toast the Clockwork Orange author, opening up its archives for this very special occasion. Cambridge Mill’s brick-lined Engine House will provide the backdrop to this special live performance of readings and music exploring Burgess’s life and work through his unpublished letters. The evening will present the writer and composer alongside a colourful cast of his friends and enemies, including fellow scribes Angela Carter, Graham Greene and Hunter S Thompson, and Stanley Kubrick, director of the film version of A Clockwork Orange, whose self-imposed ban in 1973 stopped it from being shown in the UK until his death in 1999. Burgess died six years earlier, but tonight the IABF is celebrating his birth, inviting you to “join us for an unforgettable evening of typewriters, music, rough cider and poison-pen letters”. Entrance fee includes a free drink. Whether or not that’s the rough cider, or maybe a Moloko Plus or something else from the Milk Bar, we’re not sure.
…and if you’d like to find out more about Mister B, hop along to Central Library on 15 February (1.30-2.30pm) for a free talk, “Anthony Burgess, Manchester’s Greatest Ever Writer”.