Art: Buy Art Fair 2013, Spinningfields (outside RBS), Thursday 26 September – Sunday 29 September
The great thing about art, in its infinite forms, is that it’s truly accessible to all. In a purely visual sense we can all think of something at some time that made us take a step back and appreciate. Whether it’s Wagner’s huge Chariot Race (1882) in the Manchester Art Gallery or stumbling across the building-high blue tit on the NQ’s Newton Street, art is for all. But in this case, you don’t have to be a Russian oligarch to get your hands on an original piece.
Launched back in 2008, the Buy Art Fair is now the largest event of its kind outside the Smoke, with over 70 galleries representing 500 artists with prices starting from £40 up to £7,000+. Many of the previous year’s most popular galleries are back again this year with original paintings, drawings, sculpture, photography and limited edition prints for you to choose from in a deceptively long marquee. They've got a handy little Long Bar in there too.
Register for your free tickets here.
Music: Salford Music Festival, Thursday 26 September – Sunday 29 September, 25 venues across Salford, all weekend
With over 240 artists spread across 25 venues for four days (95 per cent of which are free), Salford’s quest to shake off the ‘other city’ tag bounds forward with yet another ambitious cultural venture (Salford’s Food and Drink Festival 2013 is also currently in full swing) and the fourth instalment of another even bigger Salford Music Festival. Highlights this year include Dave Haslam and Graeme Park, Jon Dasilva, Broadway and Beyond, The Minx, Big Unit and Salford-born soul princess Ren Harvieu.
The Salford Museum and Art Gallery is also getting involved, putting on a collection of photographs taken by both professional and amateur photographers during last year’s festival.
Festival: Manchester Food and Drink Festival, City Centre, Thursday 26 September – Monday 7 October
The North West’s most eagerly anticipated foodie event is back and set to swamp most of Manchester city centre beneath a gloop of glutinous nirvana. The city centre foodie festival that last year attracted over 150,000 people, sinking 40,000 pints of beer and 5,000 ostrich burgers (not so quick now are you) is heading back to the Festival Hub at Albert Square from 26 September to 7 October.
This year plans for the Hub include Manchester’s biggest street food fair, the Manchester Beer Festival (with over 100 different local beers), the Robinson’s Pub on the Hub, the Oktoberfest, the Independent Food Market sponsored by Booths, The Birdhouse Charity Cake Sale, the Cider Fest, the Festival Pop Up Cocktail Bar by Apotheca and the Bakerie Wine Bar and Shop.
Live music will be programmed at the Hub with DJ sets from local artists including Unabombers and Club Clique, as well as live acoustic music from the likes of Johnny Bramwell.
Outside of Albert Square the gastro action will continue with the sell-out annual Fifth Big Indie Wine Fest, and a Liquor Market event where visitors will be able to sample and purchase a range of boutique spirit brands.
Club: Warehouse Project, Victoria Warehouse, Trafford Park, Until January 2014
And so Manchester’s nomadic super-club-night and pinnacle of modern Manc ravery returns for another winter season at Trafford’s Victoria Warehouse (although maybe not for much longer), just as Europe’s largest student population, around 100,000, returns to the city with all their lovely fancy-free expendable income and thirst for big dark rooms, flashing lights, repetitive thumping and disco biscuits.
Highlights of this season include: Seth Troxler, Jamie Jones, Rudimental, The Knife, Julio Bashmore, Zane Lowe, Hot Chip, Rob da Bank, Four Tet, Pete Tong, Disclosure, The Chemical Brothers, Jamie XX and what promises to be three barn-stomping roof-caving December super-sets from 90s folk devils The Prodigy.
Music: Dr Martens #Standforsomething Tour, Deaf Institute, Saturday 28 September, 7pm
Long standing footwear of choice for numerous sub-cultures and musicians from the skinheads to Blur, from punks to modern day douche-bag hipsters and anybody with a bit of a bee in their bonnet really. Much like the perennial converse hi-top, or the skinny jean, the Dr Martens boot demonstrates that enduring bond between music and fashion.
Dr Martens is hosting five gigs across five cities around the UK as part of their #standforsomething tour, with the Manchester leg welcoming LTNT, Save Your Breath and Manchester’s genre-jumping SKA-hiphop-punk-rocky outfit Sonic Boom Six.
Market: Urban Markets, Greengate Square, Salford, Saturday 28 September – Sunday 29 September, Sat 10am–5pm Sun midday-5pm
If you can run the gauntlet of skateboarders and dorkish free-runners (why must they take their tops off?) you may be able to make it to Greater Manchester’s newest market in Salford’s newest public square.
The market, which will be held on the last weekend of every month, plays host to more than 30 specially-selected artisan stalls offering the urban foodie and crafty types a plethora of gourmet scoff and arty tidbits.
Traders (with funny names) include: Orchid Pigs, Tweed Queen, Cheesecake Charlie, Grannies Potted beef, The Wood Weevil and the Women’s Institute – who will be giving pole dancing lessons,
Food: Guerilla Eats, New Bailey Street (opposite Salford Central station), Saturday 28 September 6pm – 11pm
It’s all happening in Salford this week. If Manchester’s Food and Drink Festival isn’t enough for you, then you’re a greedy bastard, but fear not, for that big 500lb blue gorilla is back with six spiffing street food traders including American dirty diners Van 29 (chicken and waffles?) and whopping great meatballs from The Amazing Mr Meatball.
The event has moved undercover, but apparently it still gets pretty chilly so bring a coat, an empty stomach, some money and some shoes.
Event: North West Wedding Fair, EventCity, Friday 27 September - Sunday 29 September, 11am-4pm
Planning to get married? But if you are looking to take the plunge then 150 of the region’s leading wedding suppliers will be on hand to offer advice on all sorts of ways to part you from a hefty chunk of your wedding budget. There’ll be catwalk shows of every style of dress you can imagine, book one-to-one sessions with the Wedding Worries Advice Centre and get expert advice from The Bridal Coach. There’ll also be florists, photographers, cake makers, hairdressers, caterers, gift ideas, decorations, stationary, chauffeur driven cars and all those other superfluous add-ons that conspire to resign you to post-ceremony poverty.
Two tickets for £20 here.
One wedding fair this weekend not good enough for you? Well then it's a good job that there's another one going on but 6.8 miles down the A5145 in Didsbury. And let's be honest, if there's one thing this world needs, it's more wedding fairs. Following on from the success of April's event, the Fete is back with even more advice and expertise from across the wedding industry. Award winning bridal boutique The White Closet will be displaying an array of designer gowns while Lynette Page Make Up will be launching her new range at the event as well as offering free make up trials on the day. There'll also be: The Flower Lounge, Dotmoxee Photography, The Cheshire Cat Cake Company, The Cheese Hamlet and Love in a Teacup.
Competitions will be running throughout the day with the opportunity to win prizes for your wedding including a luxury hamper from The Cheese Hamlet. And what is a wedding without cheese?
It's a bumper weekend for the betrothed. You may feel like taking a step back, taking stock and asking how the bloody hell it escalated to all of this? And what ever happened to a buffet down the social? I blame OK! Magazine and Katie Price. Better to just dive in with the rest. Now let's talk seat covers.
Music: Live_Transmission: Joy Division Reworked, The Lowry, Sunday 29 September, 7.30pm
An electro-orchestral reinterpretation of Manchester’s favourite gloom-punks Joy Division by experimental electro composer Robin ‘Scanner’ Rimbaud and unruly ‘anti-orchestra’, the Heritage Orchestra, accompanied by an intense visual display meticulously crafted by visual artist Matt Watkins.
Originally conceived at the De La Warr pavilion in Bexhill-on-Sea two years ago, this ambitious performance was once again commissioned for last year’s Brighton Festival and made its way over to the Sydney Opera before coming back to Blighty to begin a national tour.
£22. Book tickets here.
Theatre: An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley, Bolton Octagon Theatre, Until Saturday 5 October
Lies, deceit, affairs and the stiff upper lips of the higher echelons of Victorian life. Why, they go hand in hand like Isambard Kingdom Brunel and daft long names. J B Priestley’s most famous work, An Inspector Calls, has been produced on stage, radio, TV and in film multiple times since its first performance back in 1945. The Birlings are celebrating, their daughter is engaged, but their jovial gathering is interrupted by a mysterious inspector. A young woman has committed suicide and the Birlings each know more than they’re letting on.
Tickets £9 - £24. Book here.
Museum: Brains: The Mind As Matter, MOSI, Until January 2014
Our brains are pretty spectacular you know. The more we find out, the more of a mystery they become (bit annoying that). They’re by far the most complex biological structure on earth, made up of around 86 billion neurons, each of which connects to thousands of other neurons which are hooked up to thousands more neurons producing an infinite amount of outcomes and possibilities. Mind-boggling.
This new exhibition at the MOSI, Brains: The Mind As Matter delves into the enigma that is the brain. Asking not what the brain does for us (which is everything), but what we have done to the brain. On show outside of London for the first time, the exhibition features more than 100 items (over a third of which are from Manchester and have never been on public display) including real brains, artefacts, videos, manuscripts, photography, artwork and a great number of saws, knifes, picks and hammers that you certainly wouldn’t want anywhere near your melon.
Film: Evidently… John Cooper Clarke Live, Cornerhouse, Thursday 3 October, 6pm
Favoured contemporary poet and lyricist of comedian Bill Bailey, Steve 'Alan Partridge' Coogan and Arctic Monkey Alex Turner, John Cooper Clarke is the rock’n’rolliest of rock poets. Imagine a stick-thin punk Manc Bob Dylan after 50,000 cigarettes and a fairly hefty amount of illegal substances (similar to Bob then), slip on sunglasses and black drainpipes that would fit an eight year old girl and you’re just about there.
This National Poetry Day Event is a one-off live broadcast from Newcastle’s Tyneside Cinema including a screening of John Ross’s Evidently… John Cooper Clarke and a Q&A session with John post-screening. You will also be able to put your questions to John using twitter and #johncooperclarke.
£10.50. Book here.
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