Didsbury Arts Festival

Didsbury Arts festival is a volunteer led multi arts festival celebrating creative culture in Didsbury, through working with local, national and international artists. 

We are a biennial festival. The next edition will take place from 24th June - 2nd July 2017. The festival theme will be Roots. If you would like to join the 2017 team, please get in touch.



What's On

Saturday 10 June 2017

All Day

Didsbury Summer Exhibition

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

An eclectic mix of work in various styles by a range of local artists will be shown as our summer showcase exhibition. Many of the artists have responded to our festival theme of Roots, and there is a strong sense of people, place and the local that runs through this curated show. The exhibition will provide a backdrop to many of the festival's events held in the Didsbury’s iconic Parsonage building. [read more]

Saturday 24 June 2017

All Day

A Print and a Jewel ran away with the Dish and the Spoon
by Paulette Bansal & Sarah O’Hana

And the Dish Ran Away with the Spoon, 230 Burton Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2LW
0161 637 5517

Wake up and smell the coffee at this unusual exhibition of contemporary prints and new jewellery, inspired by the display of cakes and objects in the cafe. The display of hand-made prints and jewellery, created using silver and choice materials, are as appealing as the food on offer in this cosy, independent café. Private View Friday 23rd June, 7-9pm.   Monday- Friday: 9.00am-5.00pm Saturday: 10.00am- 5.00pm Sunday: 11.00am-5.00pm        [read more]

All Day

Creativity Towards Freedom
Mustard Tree

PJ Livesey Marketing Suite, St James Park, Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RR

Mustard Tree Participants have access to creative programmes from their engagement roles on the Freedom Project, which provides them with opportunities in drama, art and creative writing, and helps to link with other artists in the community. [read more]

All Day

Bound by Our Roots
Claire Louise Mather

Didsbury Library, 692 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2DN
0161 227 3755

‘Bound by Our Roots’ is a sited sculptural piece which is greatly influenced by the Didsbury and Manchester area and its rich historical and cultural past. [read more]

All Day

Transient Roots
Louise Wallwein

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

Transient Roots is a poetic audio trail tracing the artists experience of growing up in care around Didsbury. Follow the trail of 10 poems and experience the writing in the location they reference.   [read more]

All Day
Children/Family

Dydsbiria
by Eamonn Murphy

The Albert Tennis & Bowling Club, 39-41 Old Lansdowne Road, Manchester, M20 2PA

A celebration of Didsbury's (formerly known as Dydsbiri) architectural treasures. [read more]

All Day
Children/Family

Art Over the Counter

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

Our highly popular community arts project is based upon this year’s festival theme of Roots. Students from Parrs Wood High School, The Barlow RC High School and Cheadle Hulme School have created visual narratives and sculptural work, coming from exploring the stories and the people behind various Didsbury-based businesses. Additionally, the students of Parrs Wood High School have also collaborated with photographer Sabrina Fuller on a documentary photographic element to this year’s project. [read more]

All Day

South Manchester Camera Club Annual Exhibition

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

A showcase of images from the members of the South Manchester Camera Club in a variety of genres, including landscapes, portraits, colour and black and white. [read more]

Monday 26 June 2017

All Day

Didsbury Pieces
Grace Harvey

Home Cafe, Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Rd, Manchester , M20 6TR

Find the set of wooden ‘Didsbury Pieces’ contained within a box and become the curator of a tiny exhibition. The shape of each piece is borrowed from the everyday architecture which we live amongst in Didsbury. Through playing, organising and creating new possibilities, it is a set for you to make sense of. [read more]

Thursday 29 June 2017

Afternoon

Amy Bowles Solo Classical Guitar Plus Los Firuletes Tango Duo

Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR

Current RNCM Masters student Amy Bowles (classical guitar) returns to the festival for the second time. Amy’s programme includes solo works by Scarlatti and the Ravel-influenced Sonata by Antonio Jose. [read more]

Afternoon

Mapping Didsbury's Culture
Manchester Metropolitan University

Didsbury Library, 692 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2DN
0161 227 3755

How do you feel about your Didsburyness?  [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Revolting Rhymes and Marvellous Music - The Magnard Ensemble

Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR

The forest – strange, eerie, mysterious, magnificent… A place of magic and surprise, where nothing is ever quite what it seems…' Join Magnard Ensemble to explore the wonderful and whimsical world of Roald Dahl through music and words, and meet Little Red Riding Hood, Three Little Pigs and some Dirty Beasts! [read more]

Evening

Manchester Film School Showcase

Cineworld, Parrs Wood Entertainment Centre, Wilmslow Rd, Manchester , M20 5PG

Manchester Film School 9th annual showcase of films. [read more]

Evening

DAF 2017 Music Video Promo Competition - The Finalists
DAF & Manchester Film School

Cineworld, Parrs Wood Entertainment Centre, Wilmslow Rd, Manchester , M20 5PG

A fantastic showcase of shortlisted music promos presented alongside an industry session with top tips on how to direct and produce music videos and tell the story behind the music. [read more]

Paul Webster - Hitler Alone

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FREE - Online Booking Essential

Ages 16+, Very Limited Places Available

Evening

Hitler Alone
Paul Webster

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

This one man show, written and performed by Paul Webster, attempts to penetrate the heart and mind of the man Churchill described as “A maniac of ferocious genius”. In a monologue during the hour before his suicide in the Berlin Bunker, Hitler contemplates his past, present and future in moods that both charm and repel. [read more]

Evening

The Haunted North
The Haunted North: Andrew Michael Hurley

Didsbury Baptist Church, Corner of School Lane & Beaver Rd, Manchester, M20 6SX

The Haunted North: Andrew Michael Hurley [read more]

Paul Webster - Hitler Alone

More Info Add to Calendar Book Tickets View Map

FREE - Online Booking Essential

Ages 16+ Very Limited Places Available

Evening

Hitler Alone
Paul Webster

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

This one man show, written and performed by Paul Webster, attempts to penetrate the heart and mind of the man Churchill described as “A maniac of ferocious genius”. In a monologue during the hour before his suicide in the Berlin Bunker, Hitler contemplates his past, present and future in moods that both charm and repel. [read more]

Friday 30 June 2017

Afternoon

Following in the Footsteps of Fame; 60's Pop Music Roots
FRETS

Ye Olde Cock Inn, 848 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RN

Didsbury based community guitar group FRETS will be performing iconic 60s songs close to where some of the pop stars of yesterday might have stood. [read more]

Afternoon

Write Your Story
South Manchester Writers

Emmanuel Parish Centre, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR
0161 446 4150

Do you feel that you have a story to write, but don't know where to begin? Then this is the event for you. [read more]

Prima Wind Quintet  - Summer Music

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FREE

Collection in aid of Teenage Cancer Trust

Afternoon

Summer Music
Prima Wind Quintet

Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR

Prima Wind Quintet present a concert filled with summer music, including well known works by Gershwin and Korsakov, and the beautiful music of Barber. Encompassing many genres, there will be something for everyone's taste. [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Roots and Leaves - Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre

Didsbury Library, 692 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2DN
0161 227 3755

A craft activity illustrating heritage through a co-operative mural, and a chance to look at, and hear some of the stories from the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre collection. [read more]

Afternoon

Re/Place(d) – workshop
Sarah-Clare Conlon and David Gaffney

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Prior to the performance event, writers Sarah-Clare Conlon and David Gaffney will lead a creative writing flash fiction workshop taking people and place as a starting point for inspiration.  [read more]

Afternoon

Toot Sweet
Gillian Blair

Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR

Join Gillian Blair, an award-winning saxophonist and passionate baker, for a concert which will engage your musical ear and sweet tooth. [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Contraption!
Melia Duo

Christ Church Darley Avenue, 35 Darley Avenue, Manchester, M20 2ZD

Join the Melia Duo as they bring contemporary music into your front room in Contraption!, an interactive family concert where you help create the music. [read more]

Evening

Electronic Atlas
OLA

Wine and Wallop, 97 Lapwing Lane, Manchester, M20 6UR

Manchester based OLA presents 'Electronic Atlas' an evening of alt-electronica, pop, beeps, bleeps and everything in-between. It will bring together 5 bands, live visuals, DJ sets and record stalls. Live sets from:OLA, KITS, IORA music, David FAITALA & DJ Philip Kirkley.       [read more]

Evening

Double Bill: Northern Beat Poets + Kinky Boot Institute (The Book of Northern)

The Woodstock, 139 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 2DY
Evening

FAQ

Ye Olde Cock Inn, 848 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RN

FAQ performed at the last Didsbury Arts Festival and play a mix of 60/70's-inspired jazz funk and fusion, featuring both harder-edged and laid-back grooves from the catalogues of Hancock, Metheny, Corea, Zappa and Zawinul et al. [read more]

Saturday 1 July 2017

Morning
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

'Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious rite in a sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Oak Mobile
Oak Mobile

Didsbury Park, Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 5LJ

Enter the time-travelling OakMobile and let Talking Birds transport you to a Time Before Time.  The OakMobile is a charming interactive adventure that takes place in a magical, mobile micro-theatre. “Inspiring and had a very clear message...I'm not sure who enjoyed it more - me or the kids!” Find out more about Talking Birds here: www.talkingbirds.co.uk       Save [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Roots Stage

Didsbury Park, Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 5LJ

A fantastic free music festival in the park with a world music flavour and featuring street theatre, dance and performance throughout the afternoon. [read more]

Afternoon

Open House
Artwork by Nick Walker, Diane King and Oliver Williamson

Flat 2, , Stonecroft, Parkfield Road South,, Didsbury, , Manchester, , M20 6DA

Work by local Didsbury Artist, Nick Walker and Manchester Art School artists, Diane King and Oliver Williamson exploring belonging. [read more]

Afternoon

Open House - Soap Rock Project – an exhibition of ecological art
Ivan Leudar

10 St Aldwyn's Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 3JF

This installation makes available Ivan’s current work at the Soap rock cove on the Lizard peninsula in Cornwall. [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

'Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious rite in a sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Afternoon

Open House – Recent Textile Collages
Ariella Green

17 Spath Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2QT

Ariella Green's work focuses on her move to Europe and the balance of memory and new reality within such displacement. [read more]

Afternoon

Cumbria novels: the challenge of ‘setting’ – both place and time
Ruth Sutton

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Ruth Sutton’s West Cumbrian trilogy Between the Mountains and the Sea is set in the 20th century. Using real events, such as the 1957 Windscale reactor fire, as the backdrop of each story means weaving fact and fiction, place, time and story together. Writing two crime novels – Cruel Tide and Fatal Reckoning - set in the local area has also been a challenge. [read more]

Afternoon

Roots, Refugees and Re(d)integration
Cecile Elstein

25 Spath Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2QT

  Local sculptor, printmaker and environmental artist returns to the festival with a talk and Q & A based around our festival theme. There will also be a chance to view her artwork and a drinks reception. - 3 pm - Wine and juice              Please be seated by 4 pm - Artist’s Introduction to open discussion  - 6 pm - Close     This will be a very popular event so please ensure you've booked your ticket early. Very Limited availability, booking essential.       [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

'Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious rite in a sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Afternoon

Pop Art - Talk

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

It was 50 years ago to the day when The Beatles released their album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It came packaged in the most famous album cover of all time – which might make it the most famous piece of pop art ever – but like all the best icons, it’s so well known most of us have forgotten to REALLY look at it. [read more]

Evening

Re/place(d)
Elizabeth Baines, Sarah Butler, Sarah-Clare Conlon, David Gaffney, Nicholas Royle and Adrian Slatcher

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Take a tour of local places through the site-specific short stories of critically acclaimed and award-winning writers set against a backdrop of archive film and photography.  [read more]

Evening

Taylor and The Mason & Kamal Afara

Didsbury United Reformed Church, Parkfield Road South, Manchester, M20 6DA

Taylor & the Mason are an acoustic singer/songwriter duo from Manchester with a penchant for good harmonies, playing guitars... and the odd glass of gin.  [read more]

Evening

Life at the Cabaret
Derek Blyth

Emmanuel Church, 6 Barlow Moor Road, Manchester, M20 6TR

A lecture and recital which will take a light-hearted trip through Berlin from about 1900 to 1933, with songs by composers and lyricists of the time performed live by Jill Taylor and Derek Blyth.   [read more]

Manchester Beethoven Orchestra  - An Evening of Chamber Music

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FREE

Collection for Christies Hospital

Evening

An Evening of Chamber Music
Manchester Beethoven Orchestra

Christ Church Darley Avenue, 35 Darley Avenue, Manchester, M20 2ZD

An evening of chamber works performed by string and wind ensembles from within the Manchester Beethoven Orchestra. Among the works to be performed will be the ever-popular Serenade for Strings by Elgar. This concert is in aid of Christies Hospital   About the Artist The Beethoven Society was founded in 1888 and has met without a break since then. The Society gives classical music concerts in aid of both local and national charities. We do not purely perform works by Beethoven; rather the name is kept as a tribute to the long and illustrious history of the orchestra.  We are a group of musicians dedicated to playing good music, enjoying ourselves, and helping to raise money for charities at the same time.   Find out more about the Orchestra here: http://www.beethovenorchestra.co.uk/index.html   [read more]

Evening

The Vulnerables + Abandon

Ye Olde Cock Inn, 848 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RN

An eclectic mix of youthful energy and seasoned experience creates an indie vibe, spiced with soulful sax and keys for good measure. [read more]

Evening

Wet Sounds Didsbury
Joel Cahen

Withington Baths, 30 Burton Rd, Manchester , M20 3EB

Dive into otherworldly sounds underwater at the pool. Sound travels 4.5 times quicker in water than in air and perceived by the bones. The water surface becomes a threshold to another sound world. Joel Cahen's electronic soundscape is played across several speakers outside and inside the water and immerses the listener in a unique experience. ] [read more]

Sunday 2 July 2017

Morning
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

'Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious rite in a sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Afternoon

Open House - Soap Rock Project – an exhibition of ecological art
Ivan Leudar

10 St Aldwyn's Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 3JF

This installation features Ivan’s current work at the Soap rock cove on the Lizard peninsula in Cornwall.  [read more]

Afternoon

Open House
Everyman Art Gallery

22 Parkfield Road South, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 6DH

Everyman Art Gallery exhibits artwork by Helena Hulova, Patrick Cunningham, Flavio Rossi, Ewa Konior and other artists. [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Wet Sounds Didsbury
Joel Cahen

Withington Baths, 30 Burton Rd, Manchester , M20 3EB

Dive into otherworldly sounds underwater at the pool. Sound travels 4.5 times quicker in water than in air and perceived by the bones. The water surface becomes a threshold to another sound world. Joel Cahen's electronic soundscape is played across several speakers outside and inside the water and immerses the listener in a unique experience. [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

'Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious rite in a sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Afternoon

Open House – Recent Textile Collages
Ariella Green

17 Spath Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2QT

Ariella Green's work focuses on her move to Europe and the balance of memory and new reality within such displacement.  [read more]

Didsbury, a Cultural Soundscape - workshop

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£5

Tickets available online and on the door

Afternoon

Didsbury, a Cultural Soundscape - workshop

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Didsbury, a cultural soundscape is an interactive sound walk and workshop on sound art and soundscape by Light Before Sound. The event will explore sound in the local environment, and demonstrate how found sounds can be used as part of the compositional practice. [read more]

Writing Roots - A Calligraphy & Family Tree Workshop

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£59 per person

Booking is reserved with advanced payment only, email: info@lovecalligraphy.co.uk

Afternoon

Writing Roots - A Calligraphy & Family Tree Workshop

Love Calligraphy, 1/F, 15 Warburton Street,, Didsbury Village , Manchester, M20 6WA

Come and explore your family roots and produce your own family tree through the art of calligraphy. [read more]

Afternoon

Author Talk
Howard Jacobson, hosted by Nicholas Royle

Didsbury Baptist Church, Corner of School Lane & Beaver Rd, Manchester, M20 6SX

An opportunity to hear the award-winning novelist, Howard Jacobson, talk about his writing. He will be reading from a new collection of his journalism, ‘The Dog’s Last Walk’, and his satirical novel, ‘Pussy’, written in response to Donald Trump’s US election victory. Novelist, broadcaster and critic, Jacobson is an author of 15 novels and six works of non- ction. Born in Manchester a, Jacobson is the winner of the Man Booker Prize in 2010, and the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Writing in 2000 and 2013. The event will be hosted by Nicholas Royle, author, editor and senior lecturer in creative writing at the Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University.   [read more]

Afternoon

Roots, Refugees and Re(d)integration
Cecile Elstein

25 Spath Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2QT

Local sculptor, printmaker and environmental artist returns to the festival with a talk and Q & A based around our festival theme.  There will also be a chance to view her artwork and a drinks reception.   - 3 pm - Wine and juice              Please be seated by 4 pm - Artist’s Introduction to open discussion  - 6 pm - Close This will be a very popular event so please ensure you've booked your ticket early. Very Limited availability, booking essential.   [read more]

Afternoon
Children/Family

Didsbury's Lost 'American Ice Cream Store'
The Strange Train Company

Various, Didsbury, Manchester, M20

Didsbury's Lost American Ice Cream Store' is a performance in which past and present absurdly collide. Jump on board with The Strange Train Company for an intimate and hilarious performance in a secret sacred space somewhere near the River Mersey. Journey with them to a 'strange' universe searching for legendary ice cream! [read more]

Magic up a story (S)

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£4 per child

Adults will need to stay but do not require a ticket

Afternoon
Children/Family

Magic up a story (S)

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Does your child love stories? Are they always hungry for more? Then this is the event for them! Your child will be at the centre of the story creation process. First, they will suggest words that Dr. A must use in his improvised story. Then, your child will get to improvise a story. This fun, playful, and creative session will be led by the multi-skilled Dr. A: a doctor, a published author, and an experienced children’s performer. He specifically has experience of running story improv sessions for young children. Spaces are limited. Book early to avoid disappointment.       [read more]

Magic up a story (S)

More Info Add to Calendar Book Tickets View Map

£4 per child

Adults will need to stay but do not require a ticket

Afternoon
Children/Family

Magic up a story (S)

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

Does your child love stories? Are they always hungry for more? Then this is the event for them!  Your child will be at the centre of the story creation process. First, they will suggest words that Dr. A must use in his improvised story. Then, your child will get to improvise a story. This fun, playful, and creative session will be led by the multi-skilled Dr. A: a doctor, a published author, and an experienced children’s performer. He specifically has experience of running story improv sessions for young children.  Spaces are limited. Book early to avoid disappointment.       [read more]

Evening

FLIGHT, a play by Nicola Schofield

The Old Parsonage, Stenner Ln, off Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 2RQ

The world premiere of a play following RSPB founder and Didsbury resident Emily Williamson. As a woman in the 1890s, it wasn't a path she was expected to follow, so how did she overcome derision and social expectations to create a national organisation, the largest of its kind in Europe? Written and directed by Nicola Schofield. Duration 45 mins.  [read more]

Minute Taker - To Love Somebody Melancholy

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£7 Standard / £5 Concession

Tickets available online and on the door

Evening

To Love Somebody Melancholy
Minute Taker

Didsbury United Reformed Church, Parkfield Road South, Manchester, M20 6DA

Critically acclaimed folktronic singer-songwriter Minute Taker and award-winning animation artist Ana Stefaniak have joined forces to create a haunting, modern fable told through a dynamic live band performance, projected film and storybook captions. Join an artist as he journeys through the euphoric highs and the self-destructive lows of his creative cycles. On a desolate seashore he meets his muse; a ghostly, shapeshifting entity whose form is entirely dependent upon the artist's current mindset.   Expect to be immersed in a mysterious world of strange animated characters and piano songs brimming with ethereal harmonies, fizzing synthesisers and orchestral twists. "a superb mix of haunting melodies, electronic beats and soulful singing." - Time Out “epic, otherworldly sounds in an intimate show, with digital trickery" - The Guardian: The Guide Watch the Trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=edQovGBjsaI Supported by Arts Council England [read more]

Evening

American Roots

Slug & Lettuce, 651 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 6QZ

Andy Callen hosts this eclectic mix of American Roots, tinged with indie folk and popular music from some of the region's top performers. [read more]