Full line up revealed for this year's Manchester After Hours

Manchester’s already buzzing cultural scene is going to get a whole lot buzzier next month when the city’s annual after-hours festival of arts, culture and heritage returns for Manchester After Hours 2016.

By Steven Pankhurst | 4 April 2016

Share this story

Manchester’s already buzzing cultural scene is going to get a whole lot buzzier next month when the city’s annual after-hours festival of arts, culture and heritage returns for Manchester After Hours 2016. Part of the bi-annual and UK wide celebration of nocturnal culture – Museums at Night – hundreds of museums, galleries and historic spaces all over the UK open their doors after dark to put on an impressive and diverse array of special and unique events. Manchester After Hours will take northern culture buffs on a night-time adventure around the city for one night only on Thursday May 12th to enjoy a strange mixology of cultural combos, odd couplings and unexpected partnerships.



Join the D’Arts and the art along Oxford Road:


D’Arts Festival

Engine invites you to experience art in an extraordinary context as darts teams battle it out in the Whitworth’s Grand Hall. Complete with compere and all the trappings, our players will throw their darts at specially commissioned oches designed and made by artists, Jai Redman, Mary Griffiths, Joe Hartley & Rob Bailey. Enjoy music, drinks and pub games throughout the gallery.

7pm – 11pm (final at 10pm).

The Whitworth, part of University of Manchester, Oxford Road

Spectators Free (first come, first served). Teams of 5 Players must register in advance £20

@whitworthart @WeAreEngine #DArtsfest


After Hours: SEESAW

presents an interactive, live drawing event at Manchester Museum

Get involved and explore the relationship between sound and image with artist led

drawing sessions within the stunning setting of the Living Worlds gallery. See your work projected in the space and enjoy performances scored by sound artist JC.

6.30-10pm Performances at 8 & 9.30

Manchester Museum, Oxford Road


@seesawprojects @McrMuseum


After Hours: Climate Control

Polar Bears, Peppered Moths and tropical frogs are all present in this new exhibition exploring climate change. Visitors are challenged to ask what kind of future they hope for, and what it would take to help make it a reality.

6-9pm Manchester Museum, Oxford Road




Circle around St Peter’s Square


Bad Uncle’s TV Party

Join Bad Uncle for a trip into the weird and wonderful world of children’s television. Presenting the lowest form of entertainment in a place of high learning, showcasing often overlooked, and sometimes bizarre clips and shows.


Performance space 2&3, Central Library, St Peters Square

Free (drop in)



Unit X

Take a look around 48,000 sq ft of office space which has been transformed into an urban gallery where Unit X present a multimedia exhibition from some of the city’s best up and coming animators, artists, designers, photographers and filmmakers from Manchester School of Art.


London Scottish House, Mount St




Physical at The Portico

Poet and Guardian First Book Award Winner, Andrew McMillan teams up with contemporary dancer and choreographer Joshua Hubbard for an intimate performance of reading and dance inside the exquisite Georgian library.

6-9pm, performances at 6.15, 7.15 & 8.15

The Portico Library, Mosley St




Hop between Castlefield and Spinningfield


Castlefield Food Festival

Castlefield Food Festival will be serving up street food, a farmers/producers market, food demos, master classes and live music.

4 – 10pm, Castlefield Bowl

Entry Free – charges for food apply



Sounds from the Stores

Enter a sensory den of sound and vision for a special performance by some of Manchester’s most unique sound artists. Hear newly commissioned pieces inspired and created from the Museum’s wealth of archive material, exploring some of today’s most socially and politically relevant issues.


People’s History Museum, Left Bank


@PHMMcr @InstigateArts


Hey! Manchester steam train tour at the Museum of Science and Industry

All aboard for a musical tour on board the world’s oldest surviving passenger railway. The museum’s new train ride experience reveals the story of the railway in a whistle-stop tour, while Hey! Manchester’s favourite acts give one off acoustic performances on the station’s historic platform.

6.30, 7.45 & 9, each performance lasts approx 45 minutes

Museum of Science and Industry, Castlefield, Liverpool St

£3.50 http://bit.ly/1SBcV67

@msimanchester @heymanchester


Neon Sonnets; The John Rylands Library and RNCM light up the bard

John Rylands Library celebrate William Shakespeare with light, music and movement as the Royal Northern College of Music perform original compositions inspired by the Library’s Shakespeare collection.

Performances at 6, 7 & 8pm, John Rylands Library, Deansgate


@TheJohnRylands @rncmvoice


Manchester Left Writers and Vocal Harum

Concerned about urban regeneration, Manchester Left Writers have been searching for parts of Manchester they think are “free” space. See and hear their response as they present films, publications and live poetry, accompanied by songs from Vocal Harum.


Castlefield Gallery, Hewitt St




Take a trip Salford and The Quays


Salford’s Sarsaparilla Sounds

Three of Salford’s top creative institutions collaborate and open their doors for an evening of live music and spoken word. Curated by promoters Fat Out, performances have been chosen to reflect each building’s unique character.


Working Class Movement Library, Salford Museum & Art Gallery,The Crescent, Salford


@islingtonmill // @wcmlibrary // @SalfordMuseum


From the Medieval Quarter down to Cheetham Hill


Voices of the City

Bad Language presents a series of short stories and poems inspired by archival footage of

Manchester in a unique live literature experience from the heart of one of the city’s finest hidden gems – Manchester Jewish Museum.

8.15pm doors, 9pm-10.45pm performances

Manchester Jewish Museum, Cheetham Hill

£5 adv from Quay Tickets http://bit.ly/1MVgKPj

@badlanguagemcr @manjewishmuseum @NWfilmarchive


Poetry Night at Chethams

Spoken word poetry, live music, performance and creative workshops sit alongside a new exhibition of nineteenth century poetry, all inside the atmospheric surrounding of the oldest public library in the UK.

7 – 10pm

Chethams Library, Long Millgate



After dark in the Northern Quarter


The Photographic Grid

Join Redeye and The Grid Project, to create a photographic map of the city. Photographers and non photographers welcome. Get involved at #MAHGRID16

Jasmine Suite, CFCCA, Thomas Street


@RedeyeNetwork @GridProjectUK #MAHGRID16



The China Connection

Visit an exhibition created by the public from #TheChinaConnection competition, a selection of images that reflect Chinese culture in Manchester in response to Stanley Chow’s inStanGram exhibition. For more details visit CFCCA.org.uk


CFCCA, Thomas St


@CFCCA_UK #TheChinaConnection


International Photobooth Convention

Fred Aldous and The International Photobooth Convention host a creative collaboration;

photobooth mugshots, 3 minute live portraits and the legendary Freds at Night Risograph zine workshop.


Fred Aldous, Lever St




After Hours: Behind Closed Doors

Musician Avital Raz performs a new piece inspired by Verity Howard’s Behind Closed Doors

Exhibition – a thought provoking performance connecting Avital’s unnerving musical style with Verity’s ability to capture snapshots into people’s lives.

6-8pm, performances at 6.30 & 7.30

Manchester Craft & Design Centre, Oak Street


@ManchesterCraft @brightersound


Manchester Camerata at Common

‘Britain’s most adventurous orchestra’ (The Times) takes over Common bar with 2 live, intimate, performances from musicians Caroline Pether & Hannah Roberts alongside a Camerata curated soundtrack of Steve Reich to Bach.

6-10pm, performances at 6.30 & 8

Common bar, Edge St

Free Entry

@common_bar @MancCamerata


Jessop & Williamson present a Night in the Life of Christopher Credence

Join future musicians Jessop & Williamson for an Immersive and intimate evening of pleasure and pain, sadness and hope, willingness and not wanting to. Through live performance experience the dreams of one man.

8, 8.50 & 9.40 (performances last approx 30 minutes)

Oklahoma, High St

Free (first come, first served)



Bebop, Beats & Bass

Walrus basement club transforms for a diverse fusion of bebop, jazz and bass, as local musicians and artists come together for musical journey; from 1930’s jazz and swing through to Neo Soul and hip hop.

9pm – late

Walrus, High St




This is a taster of what’s on with new events being added to the programme all the time: www.manchesterafterhours.co.uk #McrAfterHours.


Manchester After Hours is part of Museums at Night and runs on Thursday May 12th.