Culture, Entertainment, Music, Review

#SpiceUpManchester – A Spice Girls Exhibition

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By Joseph Crutchley

Picture this. It’s 1996, alternative rock and hip-hop are dominating the music charts, Prince Charles and Princess Diana of Wales have announced they’re getting a divorce, and a sudden frenzy of “Spicemania” is upon you.

The Spice Girls exploded onto the British music scene on the 8th of July 1996, when they released their debut single “Wannabe” to record-breaking sales. Together, Ginger (Geri Halliwell), Scary (Melanie Brown), Sporty (Melanie Chisholm), Baby (Emma Bunton) and Posh (Victoria Beckham) have sold over 85 million records worldwide, produced 9 number one singles in the U.K. and received 5 Brit awards.

Over 20 years since their first single was released, Spice Up, an exhibition that showcases a variety of Spice Girls memorabilia, has come to Manchester. Situated at the Great Northern Shopping and Entertainment Complex, the exhibition was created by Alan Smith-Allison and made its debut at the Business Design Centre in London. The memorabilia ranges from iconic stage costumes to dolls and even the Spice Girls’ collaboration with Cadbury!

As soon as you set foot in the exhibition, you are immediately transported to a world of nostalgia, 90s aesthetics and a whole lot of spice. Cardboard cut-outs of the members greet you as you enter, while numerous iconic costumes, such as Ginger’s Union Jack dress and Scary’s leopard print jumpsuit, are displayed on mannequins. Memorabilia such as umbrellas and jigsaws are neatly sprawled across a table, with notebooks and calendars propped up behind them. The highlight, though, comes at the end of the exhibition, where a very 90s mock-up teenage girl’s bedroom strewed with Spice Girls merchandise give you a taste of the life of a devout fan – or perhaps a reminder!

Standard tickets are £10, with a £3 discount for students, and can be purchased via the official website. The exhibition is running from 8th September – 14th October.

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Joey Crutchley

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