Best Things to do in Manchester this week: 21st - 27th September 2019

Including... Studio Ghibli, Father Ted, Art, Atheism and Band on the Wall's 10th Birthday!

By Ben Brown | September 20th '19

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So Flute 7th Birthday Saturday 21st September Celebrating your 7th birthday must be a very exciting affair. I can't really remember mine - although that's probably because of all of the booze I've consumed since then - I can't really remember last week if I'm being honest. I can imagine that it was a lavish affair with an extravagant Turtles cake, pass the parcel and Craig McCoy getting a nosebleed. This So Flute 7th Birthday won't be anywhere near as messy but it will be 100x better as they take over The Refuge for an 8-hour session in the bar and basement. The party of the weekend some people are saying... and I'm inclined to agree. Buy Tickets   Band on the Wall 10th Birthday Saturday 21st September It's been a whole 10 years since Band on the Wall reopened after a massive refurbishment and it just makes me feel really, really old. They're celebrating in style this weekend though as they offer up 10 massive acts for the measly sum of £10 - and there's some crackers on the line up...

HOLLIE COOK Former member of the Slits, Hollie Cook combines her unique vocal talent with charming charisma to craft her own dynamic strand of lover’s rock with enduring tropical vibes.

HABIBI FUNK Habibi Funk is a label, DJ collective and platform for celebrating underground funky music from the Arab world – they’ll be bringing unheard, deep cuts of global funk to the BotW sound system.

FLAMINGODS Flamingods are a four-piece, multi-instrumental band from Bahrain & London. The group explores and experiments with an array of influences from Western psychedelia, jazz and indie to a wide-eyed obsession with music from the East.

BLUE LAB BEATS Blue Lab Beats are a jazztronica duo from London. Their influences include jazz, hip-hop, soul, funk, R&B – mix it all up and out comes the sound of Blue Lab Beats!

KATBROWNSUGAR (FULL BAND) Katbrownsugar is a musician from Manchester whose sound is influenced by 90s RnB, neo-soul and newer artists such as Tom Misch and FKJ.

ME GUSTA DJS Through music, dance, unity and art, Manchester-based international music DJ collective Me Gusta form experiences to expose the rich identities from all over the world, creating a basis for all to connect as one.

MAMA RACHO Mama Racho is a recently-formed quintet that blends cumbia rhythms with psychedelic rock and electronica. Loads of groovy percussion, trippy synths and mad guitars.

EVABEE UK songbird, producer, and artist, Evabee brings her fresh future bass and soul sound to our stage.

P RO JONES (LOVESCENE) Romancing its way out of Manchester, Lovescene is an R&B/neo-soul project inspired by cinematic scores and UK grooves.

DJ NICK SINNA Firmly rooted in Manchester and surrounded by the city’s music heavies, Nick Sinna cut his teeth listening to hip-hop before delving headlong into the 90’s drum & bass scene. Paying special attention to releases on labels like LTJ Bukem’s Good Looking and Goldie’s Metalheadz paved the way to really discovering house and techno.

Buy Tickets   Studio Ghibli Special: The Red Turtle + Spirited Away Sunday 22nd September Before finding this event over at YES I'd never even heard of 'The Red Turtle' but it looks bloody brilliant! The first non-Japanese film to be produced by Studio Ghibli, it's a minimalist story of a man's attempts to escape a deserted island and his interactions with a giant red turtle. Having never even seen it I suppose I should head on down there this Sunday for this FREE screening and see what it's like. They'll also be showing the classic Spirited Away straight afterwards too - a film which I don't need to sell to you - you already know that it's brilliant I'm sure. More Info   Tinned Up @ Oldham Coliseum Tuesday 24th September As 53two Theatre is, at the moment, 'between homes', they've partnered up with the Oldham Coliseum to put on a production of Tinned Up - a story set in the North West about Shirley and her fight to stay living in her house as developers try to force her out. From the brain-box of critically acclaimed writer Chris Hoyle, Tinned Up promises to be a heart-warming, powerful and hilarious bit of theatre and certainly worth the trip on the 83 down to Oldham for. When you've finished you should head to Star Kebabs & Pizzas too, it's just down the road from the Coliseum and they do one of the best Donner Kebabs in the UK. Buy Tickets   Quingo - A Father Ted Special @ Electrik Tuesday 24th September One of the best comedies ever, not a week goes by even now that I don't watch an episode of Father Ted. I still laugh too, which is unusual for me because I'm usually a right miserable bastard. Well, this week sees the fantastic Quingo down at Electrik take on a Father Ted theme - testing your knowledge on all things ecumenical from the wonderful land of Craggy Island. There'll be plenty of amazing (crap) prizes to be won and fun to be had. Oh and it's completely FREE. More Info   MCR Student Social Tuesday 24th September Anyone who has ventured down the Oxford Road Corridor this week will know that the students are BACK! They've descended upon the city like a swarm of well-dressed (and very attractive) locusts - scoffing up endless pints of fizzy lager and trance playlists. Anyway - Bienvenue. Willkommen. Welcome. This week students across the city can take advantage of a slew of discounts, offers and free stuff as the Student Social takes over the city. Market Street, the Arndale and everywhere else where there are shops will be offering all sorts of discounts for you lucky sods. More Info   Richard Dawkins: An Argument for Atheism Tuesday 24th September Dicky Dawkins is certainly a man who divides opinion. Usually with his own opinions on the world and religion and God and all of that kind of stuff. He's unapologetically atheist and like to tell people this fact as much as possible. If you're a fan of his musings, then I highly suggest you head on down to the Royal Exchange Theatre this Tuesday to watch and listen to him in all of his glory as he slags God off something rotten. You also get a copy of his new book with every ticket purchased. Thank God. Buy Tickets   SOLO - An Exhibition by Charlotte Mellor Meecham From Thursday 26th September A brand new exhibition for September and October, Electrik welcome Charlotte Mellor Meecham and SOLO - a lovely bit of photography and illustration that will grace the walls while you eat pizza doughnuts and drink bottles of Berliner Hells. Based in Hebden Bridge, Charlotte in the past has helped establish the longest standing live art and music night in Brighton, called Retreat, and an arts and music festival in Hebden Bridge called Inkfolk which ran for five years. Head on down any time (or at the Father Ted Quingo) to check out her work and maybe even get your hand in your pocket and buy something. More Info   PrettyLittleThing x MMU Student Sample Sale Thursday 26th September As a human male who wears man clothes I unfortunately don't really know too much about PrettyLittleThing or what they offer in terms of clobber. A quick Google though shows me that they offer all kinds of dresses and accessories and that - and so that's what you should expect at this Sample Sale over at the MMU Students Union this Thursday. Every item is only £2 - so you can sort out your wardrobe for next to nothing and throw out all that old gear that you don't wear any more. All proceeds from the day will be donated to charity too so that's nice. More Info   Talking Headz: In Conversation with Goldie & Dave Haslam @ HOME Friday 27th September I once met Goldie backstage at Parklife and he was an absolute bloody gent - laughing at my terrible jokes and agreeing to have a picture taken next to my terrible mush. I've also met Dave Haslam a couple of times too - he's also a top lad. So you've got two music heavyweights in one room, chatting about everything and anything including Goldie's involvement in Metalheadz - a cultural movement which has managed to sew itself into the fabric of the UK underground dance music scene and that's revered in the "hearts of drum and bass lovers across the world". Tickets are only a tenner too! Buy Tickets   Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back - Live In Concert Friday 27th September The story of a young lad discovering his parentage while simultaneously getting his hand chopped off, The Empire Strikes Back is everyone's favourite Star Wars film. It's a film that manages to make a little green muppet seem wise and Harrison Ford seem attractive, and as you'd expect from a John Williams scored movie - the music is majestic AF. Head on down to the Manchester Arena this Friday and watch the film while the Novello Orchestra re-create the score in real life. Right in front of your eyes. Buy Tickets