In just fifteen months Philip Singleton has turned Millennium Point around. This was confirmed at an event held on Monday evening (3 June) when Philip shared his vision for the future with over 250 guests from the city’s business and cultural community.

“We’re no longer an empty can without a wrapper” Philip explained. “The launch of our new brand illustrates an important step in our journey. We’re becoming a place that’s brimming with interesting things – finished with a striking new wrapper that now tells a story!

“When I arrived, Millennium Point felt like a big grey box, with a grey logo that neither sold, nor told, a story. As a public building – the city’s hub of excellence for science, technology, innovation and learning – I always felt that so much more could and should be done here.

“We’re making great progress and June is a really exciting time for us. Birmingham Made Me – the city’s amazing design and innovation expo – begins on 6 June and is followed by a series of other events which are fitting to who we are what we do. TEDxBrum will be here on Saturday 8 June and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) will be holding their annual awards ceremony and dinner for 250 delegates with us on 12 June”.

The future is about the delivery of four themes which the Trust Board, led by the recently appointed Simon Topman of ACMEWhistles, has given the green light to. The themes are categorised under the headings PLAYWORKLIVE and MOVE and embrace activity from digital gaming to life science and health – all in keeping with the core purpose of science, technology, learning and innovation which define Millennium Point and its core tenants and partners – Birmingham City University, Thinktank and Birmingham Metropolitan College.

One of the greatest challenges will be in engaging new audiences. Millennium Point isn’t the creator of content – but is a place which could and should be exploited as ‘the’ place to showcase and exhibit what’s great and good about the city. Birmingham’s history is steeped in a wealth of technological advancement and we want to bring all those people and things together and show them off to the world.

Philip recently commissioned an arts strategy for Millennium Point – as he believes that new and untapped audiences can be reached by fusing links between arts, culture, science and technology.

“The four themes allow us to do that in a really creative way and we have already secured some amazing activity for 2014”, he said.
In June 2014, Millennium Point will host the world premiere performance of Crowd Out for 1000 voices by Pulitzer prize-winning US composer David Lang. The event, which involves 1000 participants, will be delivered in partnership with the commissioners of the piece – Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and will premiere in Birmingham before moving to Berlin, London and New York.
Dance will also feature on the 2014 agenda – embracing the MOVEtheme – with Millennium Point as a key destination for the delivery of the International Dance Festival Birmingham. This biennial festival is now one of the largest and most diverse dance festivals in the world and a real cultural asset to Birmingham.

“None of this would have been possible without the support of the two Boards here at Millennium Point – and the hard work and dedication that my team has shown over the past twelve months. I am confident that we are on track for the turnaround this venue deserves – and I hope that the public and local businesses will support us in our aim to turn Millennium Point into a destination of choice.”

Millennium Point’s new strap line is ‘Be Amazed’ and its plans for the future suggest that visitors – new and old – certainly will be!