7 December 2014

Polly Checkland Harding
Photo of an Elixir cocktail

Introducing our Advent Calendar – the seventh post in a cultural countdown to Christmas. Today: Game-changing art and a sing off.

It’s Castlefield Gallery’s 30th birthday – and we love the look of its new exhibition, 30 Years of the Future. Put together by some starry names in the art world, including artist Ryan Gander, critic JJ Charlesworth and curator Hans Ulrich Obrist, the show promises to focus on the artists most likely to be serious influencers over the coming years. Castlefield Gallery, 1pm-6pm. Free.

Balance out some deep, intellectual musings with a cocktail: Elixir might be a little “Deansgate”, but they do serve treats with their drinks (and the ladies loos are pretty ace, too). For food, The Botanist is only a short stroll down the road. We’re still thinking about their salt and pepper onion curls…

Do more. The Choir of the Year Grand Final is being held at the Bridgewater Hall this evening, co-presented by Josie D’Arby and that bloke off the telly, Gareth Malone. Watch six choirs from across the UK battle it out to become the overall winner. Bridgewater Hall, 5pm. Tickets from £13.

Culture Guides


Northern flicks, sci-fi masterpieces and some brand new film festivals feature in this month’s cinema preview.


Spring weather might be dragging its feet a little, but the world of exhibitions isn’t slowing down with new shows popping up everywhere to greet the new season.

The Bull and the Moon at Instituto Cervantes


With spring’s indecisive weather in mind, we’ve pulled together a whole load of fun indoor and outdoor family events and activities taking place in Manchester and the North.

Poet Helen Mort.


Spring is making an entrance in live literature land with some extra special festival events, writing walks, online launches and in real life readings from local writers as well as international talent.


From Father John Misty to The Flaming Lips, The Waeve to Big Thief, here are the gigs on our radar for early spring.

Theatre in Manchester and the North


You’ll find everything from work-in-progress scratch nights to multi-award winning musicals in this month’s theatre guide.

Classical Music

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

Food and Drink

Get ready for spring and summer with the best restaurants and bars in Manchester and the North.

Tours and Activities

From indie markets to bit-sized meditation, spoon carving workshops to gallery tours, here are the headlines in the world of tours and activities.