April is here, meaning that summer is close. Here are our most recommended things to do throughout April in Manchester and the North. This list includes: unique exhibitions, stand out live music and excellent food/drink.
Visit the stunning Victoria baths now that the building has reopened for Summer. Get to know the stories of bathers and activists whose continuing work could one day lead to the baths reopening as a working swimming pool.
Derek Jarman: PROTEST! is a major retrospective of one of the most influential figures in 20th century British culture including many works which have never been seen in public before.
Explore the ruins of Pontefract Castle with local expert Ian Downes as he leads a relaxed walking tour through the grounds.
One of the most prominent figures in the English folk revival, Eliza Carthy is bringing her brilliant solo album Restitute to The Stoller Hall this April.
Above the Line and Super Electric are joining forces for a night dedicated to the life and work of musical visionary, Arthur Russell.
What are collections and why do museums have them? Find out by exploring Castleford Museum’s collections this April.
Head to Snakes and Ladders – a free day of large-scale outdoor board game making and playing – at The Piece Hall in Halifax.
With guitars and whiskey in tow, travelling troubadours The Grahams are laying down their hats at The Stoller Hall this April.
A week before he drops his highly anticipated fourth album, funk-soul-jazz bass extraordinaire Thundercat will perform at Manchester Academy.
‘Possibly the best secondhand book sale in Manchester’ takes place every second Sunday of the month in the Servants Hall of Elizabeth Gaskell’s House on Plymouth Grove, a short walk from the city centre.
Every Tuesday morning you’re invited to join the Poetry Walk with The Reader in Calderstones Park. Get into the great outdoors and escape the everyday, while exploring poetry and making the most of the beautiful surroundings.
This BBC Philharmonic concert features two gleaming works by Hindemith and Brahms, as well as a selection of songs from Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn.
Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs mix acid rock, psych metal, and stoner influences into a thick sludge of riffs and menacing bellows.
Join Alice Irwin – the artist behind People Play at The Piece Hall in Halifax – to learn more about what inspires her work.
Open to all ages.
Powerful and fast-paced and heart-breaking, we’re thrilled to hear that West Side Story will return to the Royal Exchange next spring.
Manchester Literature Festival in partnership with the Centre for New Writing and Creative Manchester present An Evening with Hilary Mantel, hosted by author Kamila Shamsie.
Featuring the excellent Anna Von Hausswolff, Swedish collective BADA are bringing their cinematic drone/noise rock to Soup Kitchen this April.
Come experience Steven Spielberg’s classic Jurassic Park in the atmospheric surrounds of Manchester Museum’s fossil gallery.
Join artist and expert felter Charlotte Bain as she hosts a day of wet felting wobbly town making in the picturesque town of Saltaire.
Among a sea of beige imitations, Joseph ‘Amp’ Fiddler makes authentic funk straight from the heart of Detroit.
From interactive poker games, aerial performance and Street Culture, Week 53 celebrates bold and brilliant contemporary performance.
Taking inspiration from Alice Irwin’s stunning print exhibition (part of People Play at The Piece Hall in Halifax), artist Harriet Lawton will lead this beginner’s workshop at the Artworks.
Live out your long lost palaeontologist dream by being a Dino Ranger for the day! Surely the best thing about having kids is getting to attend events like this?!
Montreal-based art rockers Braids are playing Soup Kitchen days after the release of their anticipated fourth album, Shadow Offering.
Leeds International Festival, the UK’s leading metropolitan festival of new ideas and innovation, is back for its third year.
From the dread of Schnittke to the playfulness of Strauss, this wide-ranging BBC Philharmonic programme is guaranteed to thrill.
Whether Liverpool Biennial 2018 passed you by or you diligently ticked-off every last one of its multiple offerings (if so; bravo), the Liverpool Biennial Northern England Tour seems unlikely to disappoint.
What does it mean to be transported into another person’s memories? Step into a new digital art commission at Storyhouse in Chester to find out.
Manchester Art Gallery prepares to present a series of new paintings by artist Louise Giovanelli, alongside rarely-seen early Renaissance panel paintings.
As part of the Liverpool Biennial touring programme, The Tetley is hosting works by artists Holly Hendry and Taus Makhacheva.
‘a place lived’ by Maddi Nicholson is a new public artwork that delves into the near-forgotten history of Manchester’s thriving financial district.
Unreformed: Wallpaper and Design Diversity at the Whitworth examines the powerful the voices of the Design Reform movement.
From a brilliant range of symphonies, concertos, vocal works, operas and more, we select our five top picks from the Hallé’s 2019-20 season.
An outstanding orchestra live in a world-class concert hall – read about the BBC Philharmonic’s 2019-20 season at The Bridgewater Hall.
Get into the the heart of the machinery with technical tours of the mines at the National Coal Mining Museum.
A Healthy Profit at Quarry Bank offers an important look at one chapter in the continuing story of capitalism’s impact on the human body.
Northern Chamber Orchestra’s 2019/20 Season features the likes of violinists Chloe Hanslip and Anthony Marwood; pianist Martin James Bartlett; percussionist Colin Currie; and their President, cellist, Raphael Wallfisch.
One of the most important feminist artists of the last half-century, Judy Chicago is about to receive her first major survey exhibition in the UK, staged at BALTIC in Gateshead.
‘Animalesque / Art Across Species and Beings’ at BALTIC in Gateshead invites visitors to rethink the human position in the world.
Marking his UK debut, Theaster Gates responds to the little-known history of Malaga – a small island off the north east state of Maine, USA.
Trading Station at Manchester Art Gallery charts the history and changing social role of hot drinks in our lives.
This December, Salford Museum and Art Gallery presents a new exhibition by local artist Ian McKay based on the architecture of Collier Street Baths
Join Joe Feeley a Mancunian through and through, who guides you into Manchester’s two pillars of cultural excellence with his Rock and Goal tour.
Embrace the effervescent energy of Sunday Night Waves, a 5Rhythms dance class where you can move with the flow of your own body and explore.
These lively mornings of crafts and singing are fun, creative sessions for toddlers.
Talking Sense at The Portico Library aims to open up a space for helpful conversations around the future of care.
Fifty photos from Pascal Dosset’s international portrait of Europe, Visage(s) d’Europe, will be on display at Alliance Française. One photo per country.
Richard Bartle: Nomadic Tales at Millennium Gallery in Sheffield explores the modern-day city of Istanbul, viewed through a series of 14th-century miniature illustrations.
Fresh local produce is always on the menu of the Local Leeds food tour. Visit six pubs and restaurants serving up some of Yorkshire’s finest cuisine.
Eat your way through some of the best street food Leeds has to offer, with insights into the people and stories behind each bite. Try something new with the Leeds Street Food tour.
CFCCA presents Singapore artist Ho Tzu Nyen’s alternative ‘A to Z’ account of Southeast Asia, focusing on the region’s neglected histories.
An exhibition by artist Rae-Yen Song at CFCCA which explores British-Chinese identity through the prism of her own family history.
Visit People’s History Museum’s 2020 display of political banners from across the years – including several that will go on public show for the first time.
Spanning a plethora of genres, from classical to folk to Americana, The Stoller Hall’s Spring season is an eclectic delight. Read about it here.
Organised by the British Culture Archive, The Refuge in Manchester presents a remarkable selection of images that capture Britain from the 1960s onwards.
How have visions of utopia and the visual culture that helped form it impacted upon the Brexit debate? A new exhibition at the Whitworth explores.
Join Skyliner for an alternative view of the Norther Quarter, learn about the area’s political happenings through it’s stunning public art.
Take your pick from The Little Library’s carefully curated collection of classics and new releases, adding a recently read book of your own as a replacement.
This major exhibition at The Hepworth Wakefield brings together over 200 works by Bill Brandt and Henry Moore highlighting their shared interests.
Combining demon lures and invented artefacts, ancient mythology and family lore, The High Dam at The Tetley in Leeds is the latest new work by upcoming artist Emii Alrai.
Taus Makhacheva’s new solo exhibition at The Tetley in Leeds explores the traditions of history-making and its encounters with experiences of everyday life.
Mark Making at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre opens up fascinating new perspectives on humanity’s innate drive to leave its mark.
July Days by Aron Rossman-Kiss at Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre revolves around a single, blurry image taken around 1917.
Immerse yourself in the world of John, Paul, George and Ringo as you walk in their footsteps through The Beatles’ home city in this six-hour extravaganza of a walking tour.
This Beatles Guided Walk & Cavern Club is the perfect way to learn more about The Beatles while discovering the city of Liverpool.
Visit The Piece Hall in Halifax for a series of People Play inspired early years mornings complete with songs, stories and a craft activity.
Can cutting-edge tech bring us closer to the events of the past? People’s History Museum unveils a series of new digital artworks and experiences.
In this immersive exhibition, children can let their imaginations go wild as they take centre stage alongside some of their favourite characters from beloved children’s author, Judith Kerr.
Simeon Barclay: Bus2Move at The Turnpike is an exhibition inspired by the artists research residency at the internationally renowned Phoenix Dance Theatre.
‘Other Transmissions: Conversations with Outsider Art’ is a collaboration between a group of six artists, with and without learning disabilities.
For her first solo exhibition, Welsh artist Phoebe Davies presents a new body of work inspired by her time spent with a group of teenage female wrestlers training in a local club on the outskirts of Oslo.
Turn your flux capacitor on and set your destination to the Manchester Opera House in the year 2020. Your future depends on it.
One of Manchester’s up and coming breweries welcome you into their space to learn about the beer making process and, of course, sample the end products.
Satisfy your hunger for knowledge as well as lunch with Scranchester’s food tours of the city centre. You may discover a new favourite hidden gem or learn a bit more about the cultural or historical significance of the food you eat all the time.
Open skateboarding session for adults, all abilities are welcome. Discover the creativity of this urban sport.
Artist Alice Irwin’s Matisse-esque friendly giants at The Piece Hall in Halifax embody an enchanting spirit of play, early innocence and imagination. Yet, they also have a more serious side to them.
Drop into The Piece Hall Welcome Centre and collect a sculpture trail map that will take you on a sketching and symbol spotting journey.
Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents the monumental work of celebrated Portuguese sculptor Joana Vasconcelos.
Staged in a former cotton exchange, Rockets and Blue Lights is an award-winning play that confronts an ugly time in history head-on.
Bluecoat prepares to present a new solo show by Frances Disley.
Bluecoat in Liverpool presents artist Jonathan Baldock’s first solo exhibition, Facecrime.
Gallery Oldham presents a nationally touring exhibition of photographs by Yorkshire-born Syd Shelton capturing the legendary Rock Against Racism movement.
Everything I Know, I Felt at The Lowry will see Girl Gang create a collaborative and interactive space, celebrating the diverse emotional experiences of womxn.
Join Krystan-Grace Sharpe-Young for a double bill of workshops, in which, you’ll learn the skills needed, to create your own photorealistic artwork.
Soft Bodies at Castlefield Gallery will reference the body in relation to technology, politics, gender, race and sexuality.
Explore the underbelly of Manchester’s largest concert hall learning about the acoustics and architecture which make it such a unique venue.