At a loss for what to do in July?  We’ve picked out ten things to give you some inspiration.  Whether it’s a gig, a trip to the theatre, taking in some culture at an art gallery, or relaxing to some laid back jazz, July has everything you could want in Manchester (just don’t bank on any sun!)

Watch a dance show...

A Showcase of Dance - The Dancehouse - 7-9 July

The ever excellent Northern Ballet School's Manchester City Ballet and Jazzgalore dance companies present their annual mixture of new numbers and the best of this year's dance shows.  Having thrilled and entranced audiences with December 2015's Giselle and March's American Musical Masters, they will no doubt put on another spectacular production.

Adding vocal and dramatic elements to the dance routines, the show is a feast for the eyes and ears of music and dance lovers of all ages. A Showcase of Dance features works from Manchester City Ballet's 2015 'Giselle' alongside extracts from Jazzgalore's exploration into The Great American Songbook.

The showcase will be the last chance for enthusiasts and NBS supporters in particular to see the brilliant 2016 graduands perform together, before they receive their well earned Diplomas and embark on professional careers which will see them entertaining audiences all over the world.

Tickets £8 / £12.

image of Band of Horses

Catch a gig...

Band of Horses - 7 July - Albert Hall

Following the release of their fifth studio album Why Are You Ok, Band of Horses play in the majestic settings of Manchester's Albert Hall.

The gig forms a part of their tour which is taking them as far afield as Nashville, Norway and Australia amongst other places, but gives fans only one of two opportunities to catch them in the UK.

Tickets £22.50

image of Band of Horses

Watch a classic...

Twelth Night - Hope Mill Theatre - 6 July

One of Shakespeare's finest and most famous works, Twelfth Night, is performed at Manchester's Hope Mill Theatre.  There's slapstick, mistaken identity, love and madness, bringing laughter and comedy to the stage.

Tickets £12.

image of Manchester Jewish Museum

Go on a walking tour...

17 July - 28 July 2016

To celebrate The Mighty Walzer being performed at Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester Jewish Museum guides present a walking tour from the old Jewish Quarter of Cheetham Hill to the Royal Exchange Theatre, following by a 30 minute tour of the Royal Exchange's Hall and Theatre.

Tickets via the Royal Exchange Theatre booking office.

image of Manchester Jewish Museum
Chethams Symphony Orchestra

Listen to some classical music...

Chetham's Symphony Orchestra and Chorus - 8 July - Bridgewater Hall

Chetham's renowned Symphony Orchestra, which enjoys a phenomenal international reputation, performs Mascagni's Extracts from Cavalleria Rusticana; Nielsen's Fluter Concerto; and Mahler's Symphony No 1 in D major.  Conducted by Ilyrich Rivas, the concert features Mina Middleton on flutre and an accompaniment by the St George's Singers.

Tickets £20.

Chethams Symphony Orchestra
image of Sturgill Simpson - image credit Reto Sterchi

Catch a gig...

Sturgill Simpson - Gorilla - 11 July

One a tour which marks his biggest runs of shows to date, Sturgill Simpson performs tracks from his new album A Sailor's Guide To Earth, his firth full lengther.

The album marks the follow-up to his 2014 Grammy nominated release Metamodern Sounds in Country Music.

Tickets £18.50

Sturgill Simpson - image credit Reto Sterchi

image of Sturgill Simpson - image credit Reto Sterchi

Watch a play...

My Mother Said I Never Should - 21-23 July - Salford Arts Theatre

Presented by Salford Theatre Company (Younger) as part of the GM Fringe, this poignant and intriguing play about four generations of women from the same family spread over Manchester, Oldham and London, explores their feelings and experiences.

Tickets £5 (early bird) or £8.

Check out some stunning photography

Black Dance in Britain - until 4 September - The Lowry

One Dance UK presents a heritage exhibition of photographic work commemorating Black British dance from the 1930's to the 1990's with themes including early musical pioneers to the influences of Africa, American and the Caribbean as well we celebrating some of the achievements and contributions to British theatrical dance.  The display features work by leading photographers including Roger Wood, Dee COnway and Chris Nash and also draws upon the archives of the National Resource Centre for Dance and the New York Public Library.

The Lowry Theatre - image courtesy Heather Cowper at /flickr under creative commons license

image of Manchester Jazz Festival 2015

Listen to some jazz...

Manchester Jazz Festival - 22-31 July

Manchester's annual jazz festival returns, taking over venues throughout the city centre including The Royal Northern College of Music, Matt & Phred's and Band on the Wall and also holding events at the likes of Portico Library and Central Library.  The main hub is, as usual, in Albert Square which will host as much jazz as you can handle.

Festival organisers have repeatedly brought the best in jazz music to Manchester and this year promises to be no exception, with acts ranging from gentle, soulful and pensive jazz through to raucous party animals (the likes of Hackney Colliery Band and Beats and Pieces Big Band [pictured] have torn it up in the last few years).

The full programme is available at The Manchester Jazz Festival website.

image of Manchester Jazz Festival 2015
image of Jessarae

Catch a gig...

Jessarae - 24 July  - The Deaf Institute

Originally from Los Angeles, Jessarae now calls London home. At just 20 years old, the talented songwriter and guitarist has already supported at massive sell out arena shows, as well as shared the stage with a wide variety of artists, from Stevie Wonder to Plain White T’s and 5SOS.

Tickets £7.50

image of Jessarae


pictured – Hackney Colliery Band at Manchester Jazz Festival 2014