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Across Greater Manchester
Just like celebrity hair stylists, we love a fringe. And this year’s Manchester Fringe Festival promises to be the biggest in its 7-year history. It’s taking place across 30 venues and is offering 100s of performances of every stripe – from dramas, and stand up to musicals and dance performances. Keep an eye out for Robin Ince’s work in progress, Chaos of Delight a show about love, death art and physics.
Royal Exchange Theatre
When she played Hamlet to rave reviews, we should have worked out that Maxine Peake was not of this earth when it came to talent. Now she’s written a play all about the 1984 Miners’ Strikes. Capturing an evocative era on the stage is no easy task,but following the praise for Peake’s first play about a ground-breaking Yorkshire cyclist we’re in safe hands. This promises to be one of the cultural events of the year.
It’s not all about Glasgow this Month, but a lot of it is… This festival is set to become a regular calendar event and there’s no wonder when it boasts acts such as Noel Gallagher, Interpol, The Killers, Franz Ferdinand and Yorkshire’s amazing rock poppets the Arctic Monkeys.
Kelvingrove Park is a haven at the best of times, but the Summer Night concerts turn its beautiful bandstand and amphitheatre into a unique and intimate music venue. It all kicks off with a reinvigorated Pretenders on 30 July and old smoothie Bryan Ferry on 31 July with plenty more to come throughout August.
If you’re looking for something to do in Kelvingrove Park earlier in the month then head to this year’s brilliant Pride Glasgow. There are a variety of free and paid events taking place as well as an alcohol-free family area and a Steps after party on the Sunday. It’s always a fun and friendly affair, so stick it in your diary.
Venues across the city
Cities reinventing themselves is a common enough theme for commentators, but when talking about Liverpool and its transformation into one of Europe’s most important art centres the term is apt. From port hub to art hub, Liverpool’s approach has been about the place and the people and that’s why at this year’s Liverpool Biennial our favourite event is Granby Gardening Club. Here artist Mohamed Bourouissa is inviting people to come together to build a green space in the city.
Alongside activities such as this there are plenty of places to get an art hit from now until October including an exhibition (We Are Where We Are) held in conjunction with Newcastle’s BALTIC.
Three decades worth of dance classics, a 50-piece symphony orchestra, a bag load of guest djs and vocalists, all set in the heart of Leeds. Orchestra of Opera North and DJ Dave Beer are set to perform an epic celebration of the city’s two huge musical foundations with this gig. It’s one of three shows in the Opera North in the City Festival – two days later on 29 July there’s a special screening of Brassed Off accompanied by the real stars of the film, the Grimethorpe Colliery Band.