October comedy picks: The best comedy in Manchester and Liverpool

John Stansfield
Photo of comedian Bill Bailey.

Our comedy picks for Manchester and Liverpool in October – including Bill Bailey, Daniel Sloss and, our favourites, Gein’s Family Giftshop.

Gein’s Family Giftshop at Kosmonaut

It’s difficult for a sketch group to find places willing to accommodate them, so Manchester’s finest skitheads simply put on their own. Both a chance to showcase their own (superb) wares and works in progress, Gein’s Family Giftshop also invite their favourite comics to perform this month at new venue Kosmonaut; Jonny Pelham and Jonathan Mayor are on the bill, with guest MC Will Duggan. A spectacular line up, and all for the price of a handshake (free). Mon 5 Oct, 8pm, free

Nick Helm at The Dancehouse

Probably best known for starring in and writing the sitcom Uncle, Nick Helm comes alive on stage with gravel-voiced curses flying from his overworked larynx as fast as they can. As quick-witted as he is shambolic, Helm is a natural comic and with this (masterful) work in progress you are still sure to get some absolute gold. Fri 16 Oct, 8pm, tickets £12.50

Festival of the Spoken Nerd at The Lowry

Like science but also like laughing? Then you are in for double treats at The Lowry, where maths, music and scientific experiment combine from comedians Matt Parker, Steve “Danger” Mould and Helen Arney. After touring nationally with their show Full Frontal Nerdity, they’re back with Just For Graphs. Don’t let the groan inducing puns put you off; their shows are slick, hilarious and informative. Sun 25 Oct, 8pm, tickets £18

Daniel Sloss at The Slaughterhouse

If you haven’t yet heard of Daniel Sloss, make a date to get to know the Scottish upstart better. One of the bright-young-things that will soon be taking over all the airwaves, Sloss impressed in Edinburgh with his latest sell out show Dark and stormed through appearances on Conan O’Brien in the states. One to watch. Thu 1 Oct, 8pm, tickets £14.50

Mefjam Comedy at 81 Renshaw Street

Bringing the curtain down on the Liverpool Comedy Festival in their own way, the good folk at Hot Water Comedy Club invite their stand up pals for a scouse take on the seemingly inimitable Def Jam, established in the early ’90s to shed light on to the talented African American acts that were marginalized by the mainstream media. Meff Jam is a pastiche and tribute to these pioneers. Sun 4 Oct, 9pm, tickets £5

Bill Bailey at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

In his new show Limboland, Bill Bailey dissects the difference between where we think our lives should be, and where they really are. If anyone is to wax lyrical on the meta-physical then it’s probably best left to Bailey and his musical talents. With a raft of new songs and musings, Bailey is showing no sign of slowing down as he gets older. Mon 26 Oct, 8pm, tickets £25/£31

Culture Guides

Image credit: Maryna Makarenko, Sun-Eaters, 2022

Cinema

Classic pre-Code cinema, the Artist Film Weekender and the music of John Williams are amongst our highlights this month.

Exhibitions

Pause in the hustle and bustle of festive prep to take in some inspiration from this month’s top exhibitions.

The Ocean at the End of The Lane at the lowry

Families

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and Manchester is bursting with fun, family activities to keep the kids entertained in the run up to Christmas!

Poet Helen Mort. Photo by Jan Bella

Literature

There’s live literature and book-buying opportunities a-plenty as November unfolds and Manchester – celebrating five years as a UNESCO city of Literature – and the wider North region welcomes some great writers, both in real life and online.

Music

The festive season is here, and whether you want to escape it or embrace it, we’ve got you covered.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

Alongside radical sci-fi adaptations and free arts festivals, we take a look at some of the Christmas shows happening in the North.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester and the north.

Food and Drink

Explore the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North for autumn.

Tours and Activities

We’re deep into Autumn now but don’t let that stop you from finding a new tour or activity to get stuck into.

Things to do right now

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Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty at The Lowry
Dance Until 26 November 2022, from £17.00

Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty at The Lowry

Compass Festival 2022
Activity Until 27 November 2022, FREE

Compass Festival 2022

sunny bank mills
Activity Until 27 November 2022, from £2.00

Sunny Bank Mills Christmas Art & Makers Market

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £20

Pottery at Earth Pig Pottery and Fine Art in Buxton

Visual Arts Until 1 December 2022, from £20

Graffiti at Zap Graffiti

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £95

Blacksmithing at Forge Four

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £15

Embroidery with Sara Dennis at Lancaster Castle

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £59

Making silver stacker rings at The Old Granary

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £13

Candle making at Cheshire Workshops

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £60

Glass fusing at Glassmonkey Studio