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Things to do in September

Creative Tourist

Summer is threatening to grab its hat and head south for the winter, but while the weather might be cooling down, arts and culture is just warming up. Here are our longlist of things to do in September in Manchester and the North.

If you’re looking further ahead, read our guides to music, cinema, visual art, literature and family events as well as our pick of the best places to eat and drink.

The September Longlist

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No Particular Place to Go? 35 Years of Sculpture at Castlefield Gallery
Exhibitions 6 September–27 October 2019, FREE

No Particular Place to Go? 35 Years of Sculpture at Castlefield Gallery

35 years and still going strong. Castlefield – Manchester’s first public contemporary visual art gallery – looks back on its history through the prism of sculpture.

British Ceramics Biennial 2019 – Stoke-on-Trent
Exhibitions 7 September–13 October 2019, FREE

British Ceramics Biennial in Stoke-on-Trent

For its 10th anniversary edition, British Ceramics Biennial returns with its most ambitious programme yet, featuring work by over 300 artists.

Measure Twice, Cut Once at the Weavers Factory
Exhibitions 7–29 September 2019, FREE

Measure Twice, Cut Once at Weavers Factory

Design graduates Jack-Victor Westerdale and Ivon Haywood launch their first furniture range exclusively at the Weavers Factory.

The Maiden Voyage by Jenny Steele
Exhibitions 8–22 September 2019, FREE

Jenny Steele: The Maiden Voyage, George’s Dock in Liverpool

The Maiden Voyage is a new site-specific installation by Jenny Steele that takes inspiration from the spread of ‘Art Deco’ modernist architecture during the 1930s.

Cinema 8 September–6 October 2019, from £8

Vintage Sundays Presents: Film Noir at FACT, Liverpool

Noir is a place of innocence lost, populated by private eyes and femme fatales; all tangled around grim mysteries, and served up within ingenious, disorientating structures — discover it at FACT this September.

Graphic Encounters at Shudehill Metrolink Station
Visual Arts 10 September–15 October 2019, FREE

Graphic Encounters at Manchester Metrolink Stations

A unique city project, presented across Greater Manchester Metrolink poster-sites exploring the experiences of women.

Cinema 11 September–2 October 2019, from £9.00

Not Just Bollywood at HOME

Tying in with Celebrating Women in Global Cinema, this year’s edition of Not Just Bollywood is entirely made up of films directed by women.

Activity 11 September 2019–28 February 2020, from £5

Meditation at the Manchester Buddhist Centre

Learn how to meditate with the welcoming community at Manchester Buddhist Centre. Their beginners classes are the perfect way to find your feet and develop your own meditation practice.

Red Dust Road at HOME
Literature 11–21 September 2019, from £10.00

Red Dust Road at HOME

Growing up in 1970s Scotland as the adopted mixed raced child of a Scottish couple, young Jackie blossomed into an outspoken, talented poet. Then she decided to find her birth parents…

Suli Yoga
Activity 11 September–30 October 2019, FREE

Yoga and Mindfulness with Suli Yoga

Join Suli Yoga for a relaxed class, free of the intimidating or competitive nature of other yoga spaces. Let Gayle guide you through the class in a way that lets you develop your own practise.

Cinema 13–22 September 2019, from £9

The Shock of the Future at HOME

Paris 1978, in a predominantly male music industry, Ana uses new electronic machines to make herself heard, creating a new sound that will mark the decades to come: the music of the future.

A Taste of Honey at The Lowry
Theatre 13–21 September 2019, from £12.50

A Taste of Honey at The Lowry

Shelagh Delaney’s British classic is an exhilarating depiction of working-class life in post-war Salford.

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2019 at Leeds Art Gallery
Exhibitions 14 September–17 November 2019, FREE

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2019 at Leeds Art Gallery

An exciting indicator for what’s around the corner in terms of British contemporary art, the 70th anniversary edition of New Contemporaries is a must see.

Venice, Paradise of Cities at Cooper Gallery, Barnsley
Exhibitions 14 September–30 November 2019, FREE

Venice, Paradise of Cities at Cooper Gallery, Barnsley

Weren’t able to make it over to Venice this summer? Us neither. But don’t worry, the floating city is much closer than you think.

Cinema 15–18 September 2019, from £5.50

MIF19: Sunset Boulevard at HOME

This acid-etched portrait of Tinseltown remains one of the darkest movies on movie-making. Broke screenwriter Joe Gillis (Holden) hides out in a seemingly deserted mansion.

SICK! Festival SICK FESTIVAL 2019 MANCHESTER SICKFEST SICKFESTIVAL
Theatre 18 September–15 October 2019,

SICK! Festival

Challenging, entertaining and always trying to change the world for the better, SICK! Festival makes just the kind of art we like.

Death and Birth In My Life at The Whitworth
Theatre 18 September–5 October 2019, FREE

Death and Birth In My Life at The Whitworth

A powerful video installation by Mats Staub, inviting the audience to listen in on a series of intimate conversations about the most moving and challenging experiences in life.

Cinema 19 September 2019, 4:50 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: A Place in the Sun at HOME

Stevens’ second major film after his return to Hollywood, A Place in the Sun is the story of how a hostile environment can pervert an already warped character.

Beryl at Bolton Library Theatre
Theatre 19 September–19 October 2019, from £14.00

Beryl at Bolton Library Theatre

The true story of one of the world’s greatest unsung sporting heroes will be brought to life in the intimate setting of Bolton’s Library Theatre.

Hallé
Classical Music 19 September 2019–30 May 2020,

The Hallé 2019-20 Season

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.

Music 19–25 September 2019, from £14.50

The Hallé – Shostakovich’s Defiant Response at The Bridgewater Hall

The Hallé pairs Beethoven’s magic with Shostakovich’s defiance in this Bridgewater Hall concert, which stars virtuoso pianist Víkingur Ólafsson.

Cinema 20 September–3 October 2019, from £9

Ad Astra at HOME

Twenty years after his father left on a one-way mission to Neptune in order to find signs of alien intelligence, Army Corps engineer Roy McBride travels through the solar system to find him and understand why his mission failed. The latest film from acclaimed director James Gray (The Lost City of Z) is suffused with his customary intelligence.

Private Peaceful at Waterside
Families 20 September 2019, 1:30 pm–3:00 pm, from £12.50

Private Peaceful at Waterside

Portraying both the horror of war and the joyfulness of living, Michael Morpurgo’s ‘Blue Peter -Book of the Year’ is brought to the stage.

Music 20 September 2019, 6:00 pm–2:00 am, from £40.15

Aphex Twin Curates at Mayfield Depot

Aphex Twin presents his first-ever curated show, which will see Nina Kravitz, Lee Gamble and Aleksi Perälä perform alongside the king of IDM himself.

Cinema 20 September 2019, 7:20 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: Mon Oncle at HOME

Slapstick prevails again when Tati’s eccentric Monsieur Hulot is set loose in the ultramodern home of his brother-in-law, and in the antiseptic plastic hose factory where he gets a job.

Caroline England
Literature 20–28 September 2019, FREE

Chorlton Book Festival 2019 at Chorlton Library

Chorlton Book Festival is back for a 15th time, centring around the Chorlton Library hub, with a varied line-up of readings, talks and events.

LIVEwire with Luke Wright & co. Image courtesy of Idil Sukan/Draw HQ
Literature 20 September 2019, 7:30 pm–9:45 pm, from £12.00

LIVEwire with Luke Wright & Co at The Edge

An electric evening of spoken word performance, presented by the UK’s leading spoken word record label, Nymphs & Thugs.

BBC Philharmonic 2019 2020 season bridgewater hall manchester
Classical Music 21 September 2019–13 June 2020,

BBC Philharmonic 2019/20 Concert Season

An outstanding orchestra live in a world-class concert hall – read about the BBC Philharmonic’s 2019-20 season at The Bridgewater Hall.

Nahem Shoa: Black Presence at The Atkinson, Southport
Exhibitions 21 September–23 November 2019, FREE

Nahem Shoa: Black Presence at The Atkinson, Southport

Artist Nahem Shoa curates a selection of his striking portrait paintings alongside key historic and contemporary paintings of black portrait sitters.

Terrarium Making Workshop
Activity 21 September 2019, 9:30 am–11:00 am, from £30

Terrarium Making Workshop with Sue Jeffries

Create a hanging globe terrarium under the expert guidance of Sue Jeffries. In this workshop you’ll get to grips with succulents and use your knowledge to creative something beautiful.

Artist Dan Berry and writer David Gaffney.
Literature 21 September 2019, 10:00 am–4:00 pm, from £25

Northern Lights Writers’ Conference 2019 at Waterside

The Northern Lights Writers’ Conference is back for a sixth day-long event for emerging and established writers, with one-to-one advice sessions, workshops, talks and panel discussions, networking possibilities and book signings, and a keynote speech and ‘in conversation’ session by author Jane Rogers.

Beautiful and Brutal: 50 Years in the life of Preston Bus Station at Harris Museum and Art Gallery
Exhibitions 21 September–24 November 2019, FREE

Beautiful and Brutal: 50 Years in the life of Preston Bus Station at Harris Museum, Art Gallery & Library

Beautiful and Brutal – an unusual new exhibition celebrates the 50th anniversary of the iconic, internationally renowned Preston Bus Station.

Living history event at Little Moreton Hall. A lady in period dress sits at a desk talking to visitors in the outdoors.
Families 21–22 September 2019, FREE

Mop Fair at Little Moreton Hall

Get involved in this living history event and discover what autumn would have been like at the house during Tudor times.

Radical Roam map - Cropper Street Map used with the permission of the National Library Scotland.
Activity 21 September 2019, 11:00 am–12:00 pm, FREE

Family Friendly Radical Roam at People’s History Museum

Explore some of the sites of Manchester’s radical history in this family friendly guided walk, marking the 200 year anniversary of the Peterloo Masacre.

The Nature of Why at The Lowry
Dance 21 September 2019, 6:00 pm–7:00 pm, from £5.00

The Nature of Why at The Lowry

In a blend of dance and live music, this performance features a cinematic live-score, four extraordinary dancers and an ensemble of musicians from the British Paraorchestra.

Music 21 September 2019, 6:30 pm–9:00 pm, from £5.50

BBC Philharmonic: Prokofiev/Coates/Walton at The Bridgewater Hall

Opening the BBC Philharmonic’s 2019-20 season, conductor John Wilson pairs light with darkness, sugar with spice, in an eclectic and thrilling programme.

Cinema 21 September 2019, 6:30 pm–9:00 pm, from £13.5

The Ocean Film Festival World Tour at Stockport Plaza

The Ocean Film Festival World Tour is a collection of short films featuring spectacular footage from above and below the ocean’s surface. Witness incredible marine-life and deep-water cinematography, and meet intriguing characters who have dedicated their lives to answering the call of the ocean.

Cinema 22 September 2019, 6:00 pm–9:30 pm, from £10

Sounds and Silence Cinema – Alfred Hitchcock’s Blackmail at The Jacaranda Club, Liverpool

Alfred Hitchcock’s triumphant return to murder and mayhem is both his final silent film and his first talkie. Anny Ondra plays a nice kid who stabs a guy to death in his bed. These things happen. Originally conceived as a silent film, Hitchcock made it a talkie with reshoots and a new voice for his Czech leading lady.

Cinema 23 September 2019, 7:00 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: 8½ at HOME

Fellini’s 8½ is another of the great films about cinema and the strain of creativity. Mastroianni excels as Guido Anselmi, a director whose new project is collapsing around him, along with his life.

Little Miss Sunshine at Liverpool Playhouse
Theatre 24–28 September 2019, from £10.00

Little Miss Sunshine at Liverpool Playhouse

Thirteen years after its cinematic release, the cult classic returns in a musical adaptation by a Tony-Award winning team.

Everyman & Playhouse Autumn Season
Theatre 24 September 2019–18 January 2020,

Everyman & Playhouse Autumn Season

A busy and brilliant season, expect award-winning musicals, stage adaptations of revered literary classics and celebrated cult films, alongside high-quality family shows. There is plenty to enjoy in Liverpool’s theatres this autumn.

Author David Constantine.
Literature 24 September 2019, 7:00 pm–8:30 pm, from £3

David Constantine at Blackwell’s

Award-winning writer David Constantine launches his much-anticipated fifth short story collection ‘The Dressing-Up Box and Other Stories’, out in September on Manchester’s own Comma Press.

Under Three Moons at The Lowry
Theatre 24–28 September 2019, from £10.00

Under Three Moons at The Lowry

The brilliant Manchester-based theatre company, Box of Tricks will open their new show in Salford before embarking on a full tour of the north.

Tinned Up at Oldham Coliseum
Theatre 24–26 September 2019, from £16.00

Tinned Up at Oldham Coliseum

Written by Chris Hoyle (The Newspaper Boy), Tinned Up is inspired by the Salford stories of demolition and the strength of those who fight to hold onto their homes.

Malory Towers at HOME. Image courtesy of Steve Tanner
Theatre 24–28 September 2019, from £10.00

Malory Towers at HOME

Take a brilliant trip back in time, a celebration of girlhood with Emma Rice’s stage adaptation of the Enid Blyton favourite.

Theatre 25–26 September 2019, FREE

The Director at The Lowry

Balancing macabre reality, high-energy and the tragic elements of death, The Director explores end-of-life and the death industry.

Music 25 September 2019, 6:00 pm,

Marika Hackman at Band on the Wall

A whip-smart lyricist and box-defying musician, Marika Hackman is hitting full stride. Don’t miss her playing Band on the Wall this September.

Guitar Lessons
Activity 25 September–27 November 2019, FREE

Guitar Lessons for Beginners at Partisan

The New School of Music and Partisan have joined forces to bring a 10 weeks of beginner guitar lessons to their upstairs space.

Cinema 25 September 2019, 7:10 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: In Cold Blood at HOME

Adapting Truman Capote’s true-crime novel about the senseless murder of a family in rural Kansas, In Cold Blood is a grimly authentic American horror story.

Manchester Food & Drink Festival 2019
Festivals 26 September–7 October 2019, FREE

Manchester Food & Drink Festival 2019

The biggest food and drink festival in the North is back, and this time it’s a brand new location: the picturesque Cathedral Gardens.

Fiona Benson. Photo by Gareth Franklin.
Literature 26 September 2019, 6:00 pm–8:00 pm, FREE

Forward Prizes Northern Preview at No 70 Oxford Street

Ahead of the the prize ceremony in London, hear from the poets shortlisted for the 2019 Forward Prize for Best Collection at an exclusive Northern preview.

Music 26 September 2019, 6:30 pm–8:30 pm, from £5

Psappha: Lyric Suite at St Michael’s

Psappha present a typically exciting programme at St Michael’s, featuring Viennese composers Anton Webern and Alban Berg, besides three world premieres.

Drink Rum with Expats at HOME
Theatre 26–28 September 2019, from £10.50

Drink Rum with Expats at HOME

We’re thrilled that the multi-award-winning Sh!t Theatre return to Manchester this autumn. Early booking is highly recommended.

Archive Poetry Workshop
Activity 27 September 2019, 10:00 am–11:30 am, FREE

Archive Poetry Workshop with Jennifer Lee Tsai

Join poet Jennifer Lee Tsai as she delves into the CFCCA archive to produce poetic responses. The poetry workshop focuses on themes of migration, identity and inheritance.

Rewriting The Future at Site Gallery, Sheffield
Exhibitions 27 September 2019–26 January 2020, FREE

Rewriting The Future at Site Gallery, Sheffield

Rewriting the Future at Site Gallery explores how feminist speculative perspectives can offer new insights into how we can restructure society in a more equal way.

British Musical Fireworks Championship
Families 27–29 September 2019, from £4.50

British Musical Fireworks Championship in Southport

A firework display to end all firework diplays with music and dancing ….. where do we sign up?

Cinema 27 September 2019, 5:10 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: Stroszek + Introduction at HOME

The 18:10 screening will be introduced by Andy Willis, Senior Visiting Curator for Film.

The Last King of Scotland at Sheffield Crucible
Theatre 27 September–19 October 2019, from £15.00

The Last King of Scotland at Sheffield Crucible

A world premiere stage adaptation by Steve Waters of the award-winning novel by Giles Foden.

comedy character
Activity 28 September 2019, 10:00 am–4:00 pm, from £70.66

How to Create, Write, & Perform Comedy Characters

Develop your own comedy characters in an inclusive all female environment with professional comedian Jane Postlethwaite.

Dostoyevsky Wannabe Editor Victoria Brown
Literature 28 September 2019, 12:00 pm–6:00 pm, FREE

Manchester Indie Book Fair at Burgess Foundation

Organised by Manchester-based publishing house Dostoyevsky Wannabe, this third special pop-up has lots of lovely stalls where you can pick up lots of lovely books, pamphlets and zines by Manchester and beyond’s finest indie presses.

Happy Sundaze at Manchester Monastery. Young child with face paint is held by a man and woman on either side inside the monastery.
Families 29 September 2019, 2:00 pm–4:00 pm, from £7.5

Happy Sundaze at Gorton Monastery

Happy Sundaze brings the summer to a close at Manchester Monastery. Head to this iconic building for an afternoon of festival delights for all ages

Cinema 29 September 2019, 3:00 pm, from £5.50

MIF19: The Man Without a Past + Introduction at HOME

This 16:00 screening will be introduced by Sarah Perks, curator David Lynch: My Head Is Disconnected.

Music 29 September 2019, 6:30 pm,

Kurt Rosenwinkel Bandit 65 at Band on the Wall

Don’t miss innovative jazz guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel at Band on the Wall, where he’ll perform with Tim Motzer, and Gintas Janusonis as Bandit 65.

Still showing this month

And Breathe... at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions 16 March 2018–15 October 2019, FREE

And Breathe… at Manchester Art Gallery

Exploring the relationship between art and mindfulness And Breathe… is an exhibition of artworks from Manchester Art Gallery’s collection that explores the relationship between art, positive mental health and wellbeing.

Nordic Craft and Design at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions 6 July 2018–10 November 2019, FREE

Nordic Craft and Design at Manchester Art Gallery

Showcasing furniture, fashion, lighting, ceramics, glass, metalwork and jewellery, Nordic Craft and Design at Manchester Art Gallery highlights the superb quality and creativity inherent in design from the region and features pieces from 1930 to the present day.

Visual Arts 20 September 2018–19 September 2019, FREE

Manchester Art Gallery Highlights Tour

Take a tour around select artworks from Manchester Art Gallery’s collection. Lead by different guides every day, each tour is personal to their taste. Tours start at 2 pm from Thursday to Sunday.

Activity 22 September 2018–31 December 2019, FREE

Sí Manchester Daily Tour

Sí Manchester’s daily tour is a brilliant way to get an overview of the city with tours running in both English and Spanish.

Activity 20 October 2018–31 December 2019, FREE

Documentary Challenge at IWM North

Make and feature in your own mini-documentary at IWM North.

31 October 2018–31 October 2019, FREE

Daily Manchester Walking Tours

Free Manchester Tours offer a friendly introduction to the city. Setting off every day at 11am without fail.

Cinema 1 January–31 December 2019, from £5.50

Celebrating Women in Global Cinema at HOME

In 2019 HOME host a year-long programme of films and special events highlighting and celebrating women in film from across the world.

From specially curated retrospectives, seasons and special events, to takeovers of annual favourites, this branded series of screenings and events will explore and challenge the place and space of female filmmakers from a variety of cultural, social and political perspectives.

HOME
Festivals 1 January–31 December 2019,

HOME 2019 Season

With a continuing drive towards bold global programming, HOME Manchester welcomes friends, old and new, for an exhilarating new season.

the night sky as explored in the planetarium shows
Education 1 January–30 December 2019, from £2

Planetarium Shows at World Museum Liverpool

Take your family on a trip through space and time in this fully immersive cinema experience.

Families 9 January 2019–9 January 2020, FREE

Telescope Walking Tours at Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre

Join one of the Centre’s Explainers as they take you on a tour of the iconic Lovell Telescope. Find out how it came to be and discover more about the ground breaking research it enables.

Holly Hendry, Cenotaph, 2018. Liverpool Biennial Touring Programme 2019
Exhibitions 18 January 2019–3 May 2020, FREE

Liverpool Biennial Northern England Tour

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.

Music 30 January–31 December 2019, from £19.62

Striking Gold Piano Series at The Stoller Hall

This year-long celebration of outstanding pianists marks Chetham’s School of Music’s golden jubilee year.

A World Inside A Book courtesy Suzi Corker
Exhibitions 12 February–26 October 2019, from £6

A World Inside a Book: Gruffalo, Dragons and Other Creatures at Z-arts

The UK’s first immersive exhibition of the much-loved tales of Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffler. Expect enchanting forests, miniature towns and watery worlds.

Things to do in the Lakes this Summer
Exhibitions 15 February–15 October 2019, FREE

Things to do in the Lakes this Summer

Not only one of Britain’s most picturesque national parks, the Lake District is also brimming with culture. Here’s what not miss this summer.

Families 3 March–2 November 2019, FREE

Dovetail, Biscuit, Splat at Nostell

From designing the highest quality furniture, to sourcing the latest fashions in wallpaper, textiles and fittings, Thomas Chippendale created a world of interiors for Nostell. Roll up your sleeves and discover the designer in you with creative family activities every school holiday

Experience The Magic of Trees at Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens
Families 5 March 2019–1 March 2020, Normal admission charges apply/free to National Trust members

Autumn at Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens

If ever there’s a time to explore Beningbrough Hall, this is certainly it. Check out the packed programme of seasonal events and activities at the National Trust property this autumn.

Yorkshire! Achievement, Grit and Controversy
Exhibitions 5 March–3 November 2019, Normal admission charges apply/free to National Trust members

Yorkshire! Achievement, Grit and Controversy at Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens

Featuring over 20 paintings, photographs and prints, this National Trust exhibition brings together some of Yorkshire’s most iconic and controversial figures.

Capturing Chambré Hardman – Developing History at the Hardmans' House, Liverpool
Exhibitions 13 March–26 October 2019, FREE

Developing History at the Hardmans’ House

As one of Liverpool’s lesser known gems prepares to reopen its doors for 2019, we look forward to encountering a rare series of photographs only recently discovered by chance in the cluttered darkroom of the Hardmans’ former, perfectly-preserved home.

The Reno at the Whitworth
Exhibitions 15 March 2019–1 March 2020, FREE

The Reno at the Whitworth

Award-winning playwright Linda Brogan and a group of local residents who used to attend the Reno nightclub in the 1970s and 80s prepare to occupy the Whitworth for one year. Located in Moss Side, the Reno was known as a space for young mixed-race Mancunians. This living exhibition will tell the story of the club through art and archive materials.

Exhibitions 16 March 2019–23 February 2020, FREE

A-Z of Salford’s Collections at Salford Museum and Art Gallery

Discover how Victorian gentlemen protected their moustaches from tea, which monarch’s pair of stockings reside in Salford, get up close to incredible art and more.

Exhibitions 23 March 2019–1 March 2020, FREE

In A League Of Their Own at Castleford Museum

Rugby League is born and bred in West Yorkshire. From its beginnings in Huddersfield in 1895 to the Super League superstars of today, celebrate over 120 years of blood, sweat and tears.

Disrupt? Peterloo and Protest at People's History Museum
Exhibitions 23 March 2019–23 February 2020, FREE

Disrupt? Peterloo and Protest at People’s History Museum

Marking the 200-year-anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre, ‘Disrupt? Peterloo and Protest’ at People’s History Museum takes visitors on a journey through the past, present and future of protest in this country.

Activity 26 March–26 November 2019, from £17

Tours of Elizabeth Gaskell’s House and The Pankhurst Centre

Visit the homes of two influential Mancunian women in one day. Volunteer led tours of Elizabeth Gaskell and Emmeline Pankhurst’s former homes are an ideal way to learn the stories of these two influential figures.

Kimsooja: To Breathe at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions 30 March–29 September 2019, FREE

Kimsooja: To Breathe at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Following on from Chiharu Shiota’s monumental web installation, South Korean artist Kimsooja prepares to fill Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s 18th century chapel with iridescent light. Prepare to step into a deeply meditative space, underpinned by eastern notions of the Void.

Activity 3 April–30 October 2019, from £6

Victoria Baths Guided Tour

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.

Football Is Art at National Football Museum
Exhibitions 5 April–3 November 2019, FREE

Football is Art at National Football Museum

With works by Banksy, Picasso and John Cocteau, National Football Museum’s current exhibition demonstrates how artists have been mining the beautiful game for inspiration for decades.

Exhibitions 6 April–29 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Rights of the Child at Quarry Bank

Discover how children’s rights have changed over time in a brand new exhibition at Quarry Bank, Rights of the Child.

Families 7 April–24 December 2019, FREE

Explore & Draw stations at The Hepworth Wakefield

The Explore and Draw stations are open daily and are free to use.

Families 13 April 2019–25 January 2020, FREE

Family Fun at Pontefract Museum

Lively activity sessions that everyone can take part in.

Families 1 May 2019–5 February 2020, FREE

Castle Crafts at Pontefract Castle

Get creative together and explore and learn about the history of Pontefract Castle through play or crafts. A different activity each month.

Little Moreton Hall
Activity 3 May–3 November 2019, FREE

Summer 2019 at Little Moreton Hall

With its beautifully charming and quirky style, Little Moreton Hall offers an iconic Tudor manor house, moat, manicured knot garden and plenty of fun activities for everyone.

GRUB Mayfield
Families 3 May–29 September 2019, FREE

Grub Food Fair at Mayfield

GRUB’s Food Fair returns to Mayfield Depot, with a bigger site and a huge array of top-class local food traders.

Cinema 6 May–3 December 2019, from £5

Now Showing Club at Old Bank Residency, Manchester

Now Showing Club is Manchester’s first dedicated documentary cinema and will be showcasing 50 films from Dogwoof’s back catalogue in 2019.

Activity 7 May–7 December 2019, FREE

National Football Museum Guided Tours

Discover ‘the beautiful game’ with a guided tour of the National Football museum. You’ll learn about the sports origins as well as getting up close to a collection filled with infamous cups, shirts and artefacts.

Jazz at the Deli llama
Music 16 May–17 October 2019, FREE

Jazz at the Deli llama

Every Thursday join some of Manchester’s freshest players, for Jazz at the Deli Llama, a cosy deli on a corner in Salford that comes alive with vibes.

Yemen: Inside a Crisis at Imperial War Museum North
Exhibitions 17 May 2019–26 January 2020, FREE

Yemen: Inside a Crisis at Imperial War Museum North

Curated with support from award-winning journalist Iona Craig, Yemen: Inside a Crisis at Imperial War Museum North offers a powerful look at one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises.

Exhibitions 17 May 2019–15 May 2020, FREE

Poulsen Arc Dream Radio at Storyhouse in Chester

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.

Exhibitions 18 May–28 September 2019, from £5

Child Labour: Hidden Stories of Cumbria at Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry

Providing a rare insight into the history of child labour in Cumbria, this eye-opening exhibition at Museum of Lakeland Life & Industry is not to be missed.

Li Yuan Chia: His Late Photographs at Whitworth Art Gallery
Exhibitions 18 May–15 December 2019, FREE

Li Yuan Chia: Unique Photographs at the Whitworth

The Whitworth presents a quiet, yet arrestingly beautiful series of hand-coloured photographs taken by China’s first conceptual artist, Li Yuan Chia, nearing the end of his life.

Exhibitions 18 May 2019–12 January 2020, FREE

Pearl Alcock at the Whitworth

Part of the Windrush generation, artist Pearl Alcock’s series of ‘visions’ and ‘moods’ realised as drawings and paintings go on display at the Whitworth.

Music 18 May–1 October 2019, FREE

Free Jazz at Band on the Wall

Contemporary jazz from some of the most exciting up and coming ensembles in the north.

Exhibitions 22 May–3 November 2019, FREE

The Other Side of the Hall at Little Moreton Hall

It’s not just the Tudors who lived at Little Moreton. Find out more about the modern inhabitants, their work and what it was like to live here. This event is free, but normal admission charges apply for the venue.

Families 22 May–3 November 2019, FREE

Get Your Body Tudor Ready at Little Moreton Hall

Throughout the year discover Tudor attitudes to health and food, with a different activity to try each month from making butter in a churn to creating a Tudor pinch pot to keep your remedies in. Explore the way in which the Tudors looked after their health and wellbeing, and get your body Tudor ready! This event is free, but normal admission charges apply for the venue.

Music 22 May–8 October 2019, FREE

Fraternity Jazz Jam at the Thirsty Scholar

Join a host of regular Jazz players from the Manchester scene as they share their love of music with anyone willing to get involved.

Digital Dimensions at Eureka! Children playing in digital dimensions with light pillars
Exhibitions 25 May–5 November 2019, from £5.95

Digital Dimensions at Eureka!

Step in to a world of immersive, cutting edge technology in this interactive exhibition. Children can take centre stage at Eureka! as they use their own bodies to interact with 3D shapes, creating vivid visual effects and stunning sounds.

Exhibitions 25 May–3 November 2019, FREE

Pears & Apples – The Botanical Illustrations of Elisabeth Dowle at Cannon Hall Museum Park & Gardens

Cannon Hall’s historic pear collection and a new exhibition of work by renowned botanical artist Elisabeth Dowle makes for a perfect – and prescient – pairing.

Exhibitions 6 June–28 September 2019, FREE

The Hidden Tableaux’s Peterloo Massacre 1819 at Manchester Central Library

Part of Peterloo 2019, The Hidden Peterloo Massacre Tableaux is the latest work by renowned artist and co-founder of Rock Against Racism, Red Saunders.

Exhibitions 6 June–25 September 2019, FREE

LOOK Photo Biennial — Chapter One: Transplant

LOOK Photo Biennial 2019 – a major programme of photography-based exhibitions taking place across Liverpool, the Wirral and Shanghai – opens this June.

Exhibitions 6 June 2019–20 April 2020, FREE

Louise Giovanelli at Manchester Art Gallery

Manchester Art Gallery prepares to present a series of new paintings by artist Louise Giovanelli, alongside rarely-seen early Renaissance panel paintings.

Sol Calero at Tate Liverpool
Exhibitions 14 June–10 November 2019, FREE

Sol Calero at Tate Liverpool

Tate Liverpool presents a new commission by Venezuelan-born, Berlin-based artist Sol Calero, whose brightly coloured, large-scale immersive installations offer a sharply satirical critique of the surreal set of stereotypes and clichés attached to different cultures.

Beyond Faith: Muslim Women Artists Today at the Whitworth
Exhibitions 14 June–6 October 2019, FREE

Beyond Faith: Muslim Women Artists Today at the Whitworth

Beyond Faith: Muslim Women Artists Today at the Whitworth brings together the artworks and stories of artists Robina Akhter, Shabana Baig, Fatimah Fagihassan, Dr Aida Foroutan and Usarae Gul as they explore themes of identity, faith, cultures, otherness and belonging.

Exhibitions 14 June–10 November 2019, from £12.5

Keith Haring at Tate Liverpool

Featuring more than 70 artworks, Tate Liverpool presents the first major UK exhibition of work by the legendary New York artist and activist Keith Haring.

David Smith: Sculpture 1932–1965 at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions 21 June 2019–5 January 2020, FREE

David Smith: Sculpture 1932–1965 at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents a major exhibition of work by the great American artist David Smith (1906–1965) – the first solo exhibition of Smith’s work in the UK since Tate Modern’s 2006 project and the largest ever outside the capital.

Holly Hendry / Taus Makhacheva at The Tetley, Liverpool Biennial 2019 touring programme
Exhibitions 22 June 2019–3 May 2020, FREE

Holly Hendry / Taus Makhacheva at The Tetley

As part of the Liverpool Biennial touring programme, The Tetley is hosting works by artists Holly Hendry and Taus Makhacheva.

Yorkshire Sculpture International at The Hepworth Wakefield
Exhibitions 22 June–29 September 2019, FREE

Yorkshire Sculpture International at The Hepworth Wakefield

This summer 2019, The Hepworth Wakefield will present its most ambitious exhibition to date as part of Yorkshire Sculpture International (YSI).

Exhibitions 22 June–29 September 2019, FREE

Yorkshire Sculpture International 2019

Billed as the UK’s largest dedicated sculpture festival, the inaugural edition of Yorkshire Sculpture International seems rich in promise.

Exhibitions 28 June–6 October 2019, FREE

Gathering – Susie MacMurray at Tatton Park

Gathering is a major new site-specific work by artist Susie MacMurray, about to open at Tatton Park.

Exhibitions 29 June–29 September 2019, FREE

Expect the Unexpected: A Chance Exhibition at the Lowry

A new exhibition at the Lowry is a reminder to re-connect with the beauty and joy chance poses. To celebrate the unexpected, as well as to expect it.

Exhibitions 29 June–3 November 2019, normal admission charges apply

Gathering at Little Moreton Hall

Over a thousand used tennis balls become the subject of a short film and installation by international artist Hilary Jack in the Long Gallery at Little Moreton Hall.

Exhibitions 4 July–3 November 2019, FREE

Everything I Have Is Yours at Salford Museum and Art Gallery

Everything I Have Is Yours at Salford Museum and Art Gallery is a major new moving image and sound artwork exploring the first decade of the UK charts.

Ibrahim Mahama Photo © White Cube George Darrell. Courtesy of Manchester International Festival
Exhibitions 5 July–29 September 2019, FREE

MIF19: Ibrahim Mahama at the Whitworth

LAST CHANCE. Considered one of the most ‘internationally visible’ artists working out of Africa today, for MIF 2019 Ibrahim Mahama presents an assemblage of lost objects that reflect upon the history of his home country’s long struggle for independence.

MIF19 David Lynch at HOME Manchester International Festival
Cinema 6 July–29 September 2019, FREE

MIF19: David Lynch at HOME

Manchester International Festival announce a host of musicians for this summer’s highly anticipated event at HOME. Brace yourself for dark mysteries and wilder dreams as Manchester International Festival invite cult artist and filmmaker David Lynch to take over for a season of cinema, art and music.

Grace Ndiritu: The Ark: Centre For Interdisciplinary Experimentation at Bluecoat
Exhibitions 6 July–13 October 2019, FREE

Grace Ndiritu: The Ark: Centre For Interdisciplinary Experimentation at Bluecoat

Grace Ndiritu’s new exhibition at Bluecoat is based on research created before, during and after her ambitious research/live art project – The Ark: Centre For Interdisciplinary Experimentation – which took the form of an experimental scientific and spiritual community formed at Les Laboratories Aubervillers in Paris in 2017.

Shezad Dawood: Leviathan at Bluecoat
Exhibitions 6 July–13 October 2019, FREE

Shezad Dawood: Leviathan at Bluecoat

Shezad Dawood’s epic film series Leviathan comes to Bluecoat this summer as part of a season examining society and migration.

Children protesting with placards, made in a family workshop
Exhibitions 6 July–29 September 2019, FREE

Rise Up! Children & Young People’s Gallery at Bluecoat

Children and young people across the world are taking action to protect their futures and the environment they inhabit. Bluecoat invitse you to join them and stand up for climate justice, through a series of artist-led workshops across the summer. Occupy the first floor gallery, organise amongst friends and explore how art can respond to what is happening to our planet.

Unearthing passion and protest at Manchester Central Library
Activity 6 July–29 September 2019, FREE

Unearthing Passion and Protest Exhibition at Manchester Central Library

Join Grace Surman and Gary Winters alongside their two young children Hope and Merrick at Central Library as they explore the themes of their newly commissioned films based at Dunham Massey and Quarry Bank.

Families 9 July–30 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Heritage Days Out at Quarry Bank

Nestled in a picturesque valley just a short drive from Manchester, visit Quarry Bank this summer and discover one of the UK’s greatest industrial heritage sites.

Summer gardens at Quarry Bank
Families 9 July–30 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Summer Gardens at Quarry Bank

Whether you’re a keen gardener or just want to escape the buzz of the city, the summer gardens at Quarry Bank are bursting with colour this time of year.

Mill Trail: Become a Factory Inspector at Quarry Bank
Families 10 July–30 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Mill Trail: Become a Factory Inspector at Quarry Bank

Head back to the nineteenth century for super adventuring at Quarry Bank. Become a factory inspector in this new trail by children’s author Philip Ardagh.

Daily Tours: Nature, power, conservation & cotton at Quarry Bank
Families 10 July–30 October 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Daily Tours: Nature, power, conservation & cotton at Quarry Bank

With an impressive programme of daily tours all about nature, power, conservation and cotton – learn something new at Quarry Bank this summer.

Ruskin, Turner and The Storm Cloud at Abbot Hall Art Gallery in Cumbria
Exhibitions 12 July–5 October 2019, from £7

Ruskin, Turner and The Storm Cloud at Abbot Hall Art Gallery

This summer, Abbot Hall Art Gallery in Cumbria marks the 200-year-anniversary of the great Victorian art critic and watercolourist, John Ruskin’s birth, with an exhibition dedicated to the turbulent skies above.

Exhibitions 12 July–6 October 2019, FREE

REAL WORK at FACT, Liverpool

REAL WORK at FACT in Liverpool is a major exhibition about precarious and unrecognised forms of work from around the world.

Ruth Ewan & Oscar Murillo at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions 12 July–3 November 2019, FREE

Ruth Ewan & Oscar Murillo at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

A new exhibition by artists Ruth Ewan and Oscar Murillo (2019 Turner Prize nominee) at YSP invites audiences to step back into the world of learning and reflect upon the importance of creativity within education.

Unearthing passion and protest at Quarry Bank
Activity 13 July–29 September 2019, general admission charges apply

Glorious Phantoms at Quarry Bank

During the summer Quarry Bank will be screening two newly commissioned films based around the themes of rights and social change. Unearthing Passion and Protest is part of the National Trust’s People’s Landscapes programme.

Unearthing passion and protest at Dunham Massey
Activity 13 July–29 September 2019, admission charges apply

Glorious Phantoms at Dunham Massey

Over the summer Dunham Massey will be showing two newly commissioned films as part of the Peterloo bicentenary celebrations. The work will be responding to ideas around rights, responsibilities and social change.

Nowruz/New Day at Touchstones Rochdale
Exhibitions 13 July–21 September 2019, FREE

Nowruz/New Day at Touchstones Rochdale

Nowruz/New Day, Touchstones Rochdale’s new exhibition, poses a range of critical questions around how the Middle East is presented through the media.

Roy of the Rovers
Exhibitions 19 July–3 November 2019, from £5

Roy of the Rovers – The Exhibition at the National Football Museum

Celebrate the 65th anniversary of Roy of the Rovers with a dedicated pop-up exhibition and family activities at the National Football Museum.

Exhibitions 20 July 2019–5 January 2020, from £6

The Sun at the Science and Industry Museum

Museum of Science and Industry’s blockbuster summer exhibition, The Sun, sets out to bring us as close to the star as many of us are likely to ever come.

Maddi Nicholson: a place lived at Hardman Square in Spinningfields
Exhibitions 20 July 2019–20 July 2020, FREE

Maddi Nicholson: a place lived at Hardman Square in Spinningfields

‘a place lived’ by Maddi Nicholson is a new public artwork that delves into the near-forgotten history of Manchester’s thriving financial district.

Activity 22 July–6 October 2019, from £2.90

Guided Tour of Nether Alderley Mill

This summer, uncover Nether Alderley’s best kept secret. Hidden beneath the distinctive, long sloping roof of this medieval building is a fully restored working corn mill.

Future Cities: Technolpolis & Everyday Life at CFCCA, Manchester
Exhibitions 2 August–19 October 2019, FREE

Future Cities: Technopolis & Everyday Life at Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art

How is the Digital Revolution affecting the future of our cities? A new season of exhibitions and events at CFCCA explores.

Jiu Society: Lost in Shenzhen at CFCCA, Manchester
Exhibitions 2 August–19 October 2019, FREE

Jiū Society: Lost in Shenzhen at Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art

Artist collective Jiū Society prepares to take over CFCCA’s Gallery 2 with their ambitious multi-media installation, Lost in Shenzhen.

Unreformed: Wallpaper and Design Diversity at the Whitworth
Exhibitions 17 August 2019–5 July 2020, FREE

Unreformed: Wallpaper and Design Diversity at the Whitworth

Unreformed: Wallpaper and Design Diversity at the Whitworth examines the powerful the voices of the Design Reform movement.

Cézanne at the Whitworth
Exhibitions 24 August 2019–1 March 2020, FREE

Cézanne at the Whitworth

This exhibition celebrates an extraordinary collection of drawings and prints by Paul Cézanne (1839–1906) that has been gifted and placed on long-term loan to the Whitworth

Things to do right now

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Cinema 15–18 September 2019, from £5.50

MIF19: Sunset Boulevard at HOME

Visual Arts 20 September 2018–19 September 2019, FREE

Manchester Art Gallery Highlights Tour

Red Dust Road at HOME
Literature 11–21 September 2019, from £10.00

Red Dust Road at HOME

A Taste of Honey at The Lowry
Theatre 13–21 September 2019, from £12.50

A Taste of Honey at The Lowry

Cinema 13–22 September 2019, from £9

The Shock of the Future at HOME

MIF19 David Lynch at HOME Manchester International Festival
Cinema 6 July–29 September 2019, FREE

MIF19: David Lynch at HOME

Exhibitions 6 April–29 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Rights of the Child at Quarry Bank