1 December – Street Scene at the RNCM & Levy Christmas Markets

Polly Checkland Harding
Gingerbread biscuits

Our cultural countdown to Christmas… Spend an evening in summertime New York, and plan a trip to Levy Market’s special Christmas events.

First up, a production that is widely known as the first American opera: the RNCM is bringing Kurt Weill’s Street Scene to life, with what set designer Kate Ford describes as “a transparent house where there is no place for secrets” acting as the perfect stage for family and community tensions bubbling over during 24 hours in the high summer of 1946. The hopes, dreams and tensions between the characters make for a gripping, escalating operatic tragedy – a melting-pot that’s not to be missed in the chilly run up to Christmas. Street Scene, RNCM, 2-12 December, tickets from £12

The first American opera & festive markets in Levenshulme

Off-set the tension a little by planning a trip to one of Levenshulme Market’s special Christmas editions later in the month. There are three themed markets to choose from – first up is the Handmade and Home market (5 December), with nearly 50 traders, and hot food and drink to keep you going. Next is the Food and Drink special (12 December), with the very best street food, local produce, foodie gifts and hampers on offer (plus lots of lovely mulled wine and festive treats). Finally, there’s the Christmas Night Market Party (18 December) – a last hurrah for Christmas shopping, as well as a chance to kick back with some live music and entertainment. Levenshulme Market Christmas events, 5, 12 & 18 December, free entry

Culture Guides

Cinema

Black and white classics and a Tarantino-scripted pop-thriller are amongst our Valentine’s themed picks for February.

Exhibitions

The world of art and exhibitions never quite stops, so we have lots of new shows to look forward to at the start of 2023.

The Spongebob Musical at the Manchester Opera House

Families

New year, new start, and what better way to welcome in 2023 than by planning and experiencing all sorts of exciting family events in Manchester and the North?

Gwendoline Riley. Photo by Adrian Lourie

Literature

From local writing to international talent, we have heaps of online launches and in real life readings not to mention some extra special festival events coming our way in live literature land.

Music

More brilliant gigs appear on the horizon as we inch further into 2023.

Theatre in Manchester and the North

Theatre

Queer Contact Festival, stunning physical theatre and intimate in-the-round performance top our eclectic list of drama, comedy and dance this month.

Classical Music

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

Food and Drink

Start 2023 as you mean to go on, with the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North.

Tours and Activities

Eat your way through Ancoats, build a miniature eco-system and immerse yourself in visual art in this month’s tours and activities guide.

Things to do right now

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Activity Until 8 February 2023, from £170.00

Drawing course with Nina Hunter

Music Until 16 February 2023, from £9.50

Donna Candy at SOUP

vegan super club
Activity Until 17 February 2023, from £50

Supper Club at the Vegetarian Society Cookery School

Exhibitions Until 18 February 2023, FREE

The Confessional at HOME

Queer Contact 2023
Comedy Until 18 February 2023,

Queer Contact Festival 2023

PUSH Festival 2023 at HOME
Festivals Until 18 February 2023,

PUSH Festival 2023 at HOME

The Singing Mermaid at Waterside
Families Until 19 February 2023, from £14.00

The Singing Mermaid at Waterside CANCELLED

Activity Until 23 February 2023, from £59.99

Write Like A Grrrl: Ignite

Activity Until 25 February 2023, from £13

Elizabeth Gaskell’s House Tour

Fairy Tales at Z-Arts
Families Until 26 February 2023, from £3.00

Fairy Tales at Z-arts