Over the past year, cultural organisations in Manchester and the north have become masters in the art of delivering online events. As a result, what local culture lovers have lost in the analogue, they’ve gained digitally.
While live events are now inching back into being, the cultural organisations we love continue to beam their programmes into our living rooms, for all to enjoy. From theatre shows to classical concerts to live literature events, there’s so much northern-born culture to explore online – it’s just a matter of getting to the really good stuff…
….which is where we come in. Spanning all of our sections and covering both the mainstream and the niche, here we round up our top picks of online events and activities coming to a screen near you this May.
Here are our picks
Tai Shani: The Neon Hieroglyph – Online with Manchester International Festival Virtual Factory, online, Until 31 March 2022, free entry - Visit now
Turner Prize-winning artist Tai Shani takes us on an LSD-inspired hallucinatory journey across time and space. Prepare to have your consciousness expanded.
Jhumpa Lahiri & Kamila Shamsie in Conversation, online, 20–27 May 2021, free entry - Find Out More
The latest spring guest to be welcomed by Manchester Literature Festival 2021 is the winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Jhumpa Lahiri, who will be in conversation with Women’s Prize-winning novelist Kamila Shamsie.
Sons and Mothers: Lawrence, Larkin and the Maternal Muse, online, 26 May 2021, from £4 - Book now
Join poet Philip Watts to explore the work of two of the finest English writers of the 20th century. The talk will examine DH Lawrence’s relationship with his mother influenced his work and how that, in turn, affected Philip Larkin’s poetry some years later.
Abandon Normal Devices Festival 2021, 27 May–11 July 2021, Tickets not yet on sale - Book now
Abandon Normal Devices Festival, the UK’s only roaming digital festival, resurfaces in 2021 with a new hybrid format, exploring the post-industrial landscapes of the Manchester Ship Canal and River Mersey.
Curator's Tour: Grayson's Art Club, online, Until 30 June 2021, free entry - Visit now
Join Manchester Art Gallery’s Natasha Howes and Fiona Corridan for a curator’s tour of Grayson’s Art Club, featuring pieces that didn’t quite make it onto the Grayson’s Art Club Channel 4 show, but which are well worth a look!
Doodle Den: Playful Protests at People's History Museum at People’s History Museum in Manchester, City Centre and online, Until 31 December 2021, free entry
The whole family can use the People’s History Museum’s online resources to creatively explore important topics including climate change, LGBT+ Pride and migrant rights.
Experience YBA artist Damien Hirst’s towering and provocative outdoor sculptures at Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
Trading Station at Manchester Art Gallery charts the history and changing social role of hot drinks in our lives.
A collaborative project that takes inspiration from the history of the Leigh Female Reformers of 1819 and the monstrous representations of them in the media of the time.
Working Class Movement Library presents an online exhibition of powerful posters made by young activists fighting for civil rights in Northern Ireland during the Troubles.
Politically charged with a hip-hop soundtrack, there is no doubt that this filmed performance is one of the most eagerly anticipated releases of 2020.
Manchester Art Gallery reopens with a thought-provoking new exhibition that delves into the history of the public institution and its role within the city.
Tate Liverpool presents a major retrospective of work by Don McCullin, widely considered to be one of the greatest photojournalists of our time.
Psappha’s 2020–21 season explores the sharpest and smartest sounds in contemporary classical music, presented in concert and streamed online for free.
It’s the March edition of the Food and Drink Guide to Manchester and the North and things are slowly starting to feel more promising. Spring is here, the weather is mostly warming up and in just a few weeks we’ll be allowed to eat and drink outside at venues with outside space.