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Go BackWE WANT SOME CHAOS AGAIN! Manumission´s Mike & Claire reveal Summer plan!

Posted: 13/7/05 11:32

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Today I am off to interview Claire and Mike from Manumission. I am late, the AC has just broken in the car and it’s bloody hot. What will I make of the infamous couple who have, for the last 11 years, provided us with some of the most memorable parties, and a Motel, which now deserves a place in the history books. I arrive at the new (and some what sparse office – no furniture has arrived yet!!) and immediately greeted with beaming smiles from both! Contentment and happiness fills the room, and after a few minutes I feel like I am with old friends...

So guys, what do you have planned for the summer at Manumission?
Mike: This year we are going back to our basic principles on how to throw a party. The origins where very chaotic, but over the years we have strived to perfect things. Every element of the party related intricately to the overall concept and story. Now we have got to the point where we find we don’t want to do that anymore, we want some chaos again! The shows are getting tighter and tighter, and this year we have Fisherspooner performing live, as the show is a collaboration with them – which is very exciting within itself. However, between the show there´s going to be lots more chaos.

Claire: We wanted to keep the professionalism that we´ve gained over the years, but we found the routine was getting boring for us, and we felt that if we found it boring, people coming to the show would as well.

You always seem well ahead of the game, Burlesque is making a huge comeback in the UK, and Lipstick Lesbianism is still in fashion.
Claire: Yeah, well the Burlesque thing for us has always been a major part, and we did Lipstick Lesbians 9 years ago! There was a club called Juicy in New York, which was huge on the lipstick lesbianism tip! You would only get 1 guy for every 3 girls that went in.

Mike: It was Juicy that inspired the whole sex show thing for us. Ibiza already had the wildness and international crowd and energy, and we came here with our show. Ibiza is a melting pot and we concentrated all of this and put it into Manumission.

So Manumission starts in 1 week time – Monday 4th July. But on top of that you have Bar M, Ibiza Rocks and Carry on at Space, so you got 4 parties on the boil...
Mike: Manumission is basically where Claire &  are on a trip of our own, and each year we take our ideas based on current world affairs or situations, mould them into a show and basically throw the kind of party we would like to throw for a few of our friends, make it how we would like to see it – and basically say “Hey everyone is welcome!”

Claire: We spend all winter cooking up ideas for the next year’s party. Each year is a constant evolution, based on our experiences of the world. Things we are inspired by...

Mike: Yeah, for instance the year we did The Hitchcock Year – The Phantasmagorical Manumission Mystery – that was very political. All about dropping the debt, free trade, the hole in the Ozone. All these things we blamed on "HELP ME OUT HERE!!!" Last year was the Story of  M, and was on a much more of a spiritual tip. There are all these global issues, which looked pretty dire from a political viewpoint. Then I read a book called “Autobiography of a Yogi” – and it makes you see that, actually, there is hope and we have a lot more power than we actually think. All this was put into last year show...

This year is all about Metamorphosis....

The stage is going to be very much alive. Constantly changing colour, things birthing from it. This will be punctuated by Fisherspooner coming out with their own blend of visuals and the Manumission girls choreographed on stage. 

Claire:  The stage is based on a surrealist house of fun Dali did for the 1939 NYC Trade Fair. It’s very mad and completely off the wall. It’s going to be  insane!!! This year we are also introducing colour therapy...

The whole club will be bathed in changing colour light, which will work with your 9 Chakra points. So every half and hour the whole colour of the club and stage will change. This will be linked with musical notes, and smells, so hopefully by morning as the sun is coming up, everyone will be completely blissed out!

 We hope to stimulate all the senses this year. To list off all we have planned would take away from the excitement, but lets just say we have a lot of chaotic and crazy stuff going on for the whole night! We want to keep a little mystery there for the readers, so they don’t quite know what to expect!! One thing I can tell is that Harmon Pro have given us the most amazing JBL sound system – a million  of sound equipment!

Just out of interest – Why Fisherspooner? They are not necessarily the most well known Electro band. So what’s the reasoning behind this?
Mike: It was weird because we really liked the album and a lot of people told us that we should work with them. At the same time Fisherspooner were being told that they should really work with Manumission. So we were in a way bought together. Everyone was saying, “ You´ve got to have Fisherspooner” and to start with we were like, how is this going to work? We make films, you make films – you get choreographers in to do things, we get choreographers in to do things – we make shows, they make shows, so it has been quite tricky!

Claire: Yeah, we went over to NYC for a few weeks and Fisherspooner came over here, and we have worked together on the show and we think something very special has come out of it. We are not used to collaborating, we are very much used to doing our own thing, so it has been a learning experience as well. However, the party´s going to be incredible this year!

So we´re 1 week from the opening, and yet you guys seem super relaxed. How?!!
Claire:  That’s funny, earlier today we were like “AAHH!!!” but, we generally don’t panic. We get nervous, but on the night we can´t panic, we just let it flow and so far it has always run smoothly, well almost!!!

So let’s talk about the USA, and the rumoured tour that never happened? Why was that?
Mike: We were going to go during off-season to do a tour, but in a way we´re glad we didn’t – USA is just too repressed. You can’t even smoke in clubs; it was like being back at school! We live in Ibiza, one of the free-est places on the planet where you can live a nice life with nice people – Ibiza is fantastic & unique!

Claire: It was a nice idea, but the more we thought about it – the more it just didn’t seem right.

Mike: The thing with Ibiza is that you can be who you want to be, without being judged. It’s the place where all the characters wanted to get, away from the suppressed society there were from (Franco dictatorship as example), or didn’t fit in, they just came here...

Claire: Ibiza is class and age free. It’s great!

Mike: Class is more likely to go against you here. All the things you need to prove yourself in the UK, Cell phones, cars, etc... are meaningless! 
If you wanted to do a really good process of natural selection – Ibiza is a good model! There are more nationalities here than anywhere else in the world. Everyone intermingles, no racism or barriers.

So if I said to you guys – here is £5million – you can live anywhere else in the world you want, or you can stay here without the £5 million, what would you do?
Mike: We would live here!!! We will live here till we die. It is THE best place in the world to live.

But let’s say Privilege, Manumission, all the parties ended tomorrow. No more clubs on the Island, what would you do?
Claire: Well we love what we do, but we love the Island more. We live on a farm, and we often speak about just being farmers, we would be perfectly happy just doing that!

So, any plans of a world tour, or to take Manumission back to the UK?
Mike: Only if the right offers come in, the Oscars or something ! We only do 12 parties a year... And we don’t want to filter the brand or dilute the quality of the party. If we were touring all winter, we wouldn’t be able to put the same level of work into the parties here on Ibiza, and for us that isn’t good enough.

Everyone is talking of the shorter season, hotel occupancy is down, clubs not as full. Do you agree with this, and do you think it will affect you?
Claire: I don’t think it will affect the Manumission party, we are the largest party on the Island, and hopefully will continue to be so. I don’t think less people are coming over; I just think they are being more selective about where they go! We prefer just doing the 12 parties a year, when we were doing 15, was too much. We planned to do 12, it’s a good number!

What about T
he Manumission Motel. The Legendary, now demolished! Do you miss that time (read all about here  )?
Mike: Yeah! We watched it being pulled down; we still have some of the bricks here! At that time the Motel was definitely the best place in the world. In some ways it’s a relief that is has gone, its perfect, because it means its untouchable.

 When the Motel was open we only booked friends to play for us, so we could all hang out! Was the coolest place to be!

Finally why should people coming to the Island come to Manumission above all else?
Mike: Don’t miss they think they are too cool for Ibiza, they maybe think they are too cool for Manumission. But you know, Manumission and Ibiza are way beyond their level of coolness. Ibiza is a fusion and melting pot of THE cool people. If you don’t come you don’t know what you´ve missed!

Claire: We are not a super club; we just throw parties that we would like to go to! And this year it is going to be incredible!!!

Claire, Mike, thank you ...!!! for sparing me some time –
I know you are super busy! See you on Monday at Privilege!
And with that the interview was over – all too soon. 
As I walk back to the car, (the one with no AC – doesn’t seem so important now) I realise that the real people are here on the Island. Scrape away the superficial layer, and underneath is the staple foundations of honesty, happiness and contentment. Not ones running from something, but those trying to find a better place... Claire and Mike have found Nirvana! Let them take you there...

4th July Opening Party 11th July 18th July 25th July
The Infallible Magnificence of the Nymph & The Butterfly

Babyshambles (live)
Fischerspooner (live)
Eddy Temple Morris,
Glimmers Twins
Barry Ashworth
Manumission Dj residents
The Touch of the Cheetah & The Morphing Pillow Melody

Fischerspooner (live)
Whitey (live)
Ewan Pearson
Manumission Dj residents
The Enriching Delight of The Spider & The Fool

Fischerspooner (live)
Do Me Bad Things (live)
Tom Middleton
Manumission Dj residents
The Velvet Charm of Venus & The Channel Islands Fox

Fischerspooner (live)
Freeform Five (live)
Ewan Pearson
Manumission Dj residents
1st Aug. 08th Aug. 15th Aug. 22nd Aug.
The Beauteous Trust of Apollo & The Roaring Harlequin

Fischerspooner (live)
Annie (live)
Eddy Temple Morris
Adam Freeland
Manumission Dj residents
The Vaudeville Arrival of The Well Bodied Oryx

Fischerspooner (live)
Hot Hot Heat (live)
Ladytron (Dj set)
Manumission Dj residents
The Enchanted Eagle & An Angel's Petticoat

Fischerspooner (live)
Fatboy Slim (Dj set)
Tom Vek (live)
Optimo (Dj set)
Manumission Dj residents

The Velvet Touch of Eros & A Tigers Carousel

Fischerspooner (live)
The Rakes (live)
Wall Of Sound
Mark Jones
Alvin & guests
Manumission Dj residents

29th Aug. 5th Sept. 12th Sept. 19th Sept.Closing Party
The Tickling Revelation of Cupid &The Seahorse
Fischerspooner (live)
Infadels (live)
Eddy Temple Morris
Krafty Kuts
Manumission Dj residents
The Enchantment of Aphrodite, The Coquette & The Shark

Fischerspooner (live)
Ewan Pearson
Manumission Dj residents
The Rebirth of The Burlesque Goddess & The unadorned Flying Fox Bat

Fischerspooner (live)
Optimo (Dj set)
Manumission Dj residents
The Waggish Creativity of Double Dutch & The Cherished Angel Dove...
Fischerspooner (live)
Juliette & The Licks (live)
Ewan Pearson
Eddy Temple Morris
Manumission Dj residents

Words by Rhyan Paul