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The Sheffield culture guide written by in-the-know locals

What's On

Our Sheffield culture calendar. Filled with picks of the city’s arts, culture and heritage events, both in-person and virtual. Plus reviews and festival guides.

Our Picks

Sensoria

Sheffield's festival of film and music. Returning on 2–9 October 2021 with performances, live film scores, talks, screenings and exhibitions.

Our Picks

Theatre picks

Our picks of the shows that are taking to the Sheffield stage over the coming weeks and months.

Our Picks

Enable US

Twice a year the Enable US festival brings to town unmissable and intriguing pieces of new theatre and performance.

Anomaly Life Drawing

Multiple dates

Kelham Island Museum

Life drawing classes that aim to spark new ideas, using artist references and set design to help you push your creative boundaries. Join them this autumn in their new venue, next to The Millowners Arms in Kelham Island Museum.

Bears of Sheffield

Mon. 12 July 2021 — Wed. 29 September 2021

The Bears of Sheffield have arrived! Head out on the public arts trail this summer to meet the friendly creatures. They'll be auctioned off to raise funds for Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

Lovefool

Wed. 29 September 2021

Theatre Deli

What if the last time you dated, you were doused in Impulse and the Spice Girls were at number one? Finding someone phwoar-some to replace her ex-husband won’t be easy, so Rachel’s dusting off her Sugar magazines and taking inspiration from the 90s.

Too Pretty to Punch

Thu. 30 September 2021

Theatre Deli

Edalia Day presents the hilarious and uplifting journey of a banjo wielding, poetry slam winning, trans warrior who is taking on the world one troll at a time.

Otherworld by Kieran Ingram

Thu. 16 September 2021 — Thu. 30 September 2021

Artcade Gallery, Unit 10 The Forum, 127–129 Devonshire Street, S3 7SB

A collection of works on paper and oil paintings by Kieran Ingram, influenced by the ‘folk horror’ genre, British folklore and the occult.

George Crowley Trio

Fri. 1 October 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

George Crowley is a key player in London’s creative jazz and improv scene. He's accompanied here by innovative guitarist Rob Luft and the versatile Tim Giles on drums, creating a dynamic trio. Hosted by Sheffield Jazz.

Life Drawing

Multiple dates

Millennium Gallery

Develop your drawing skills working from a nude model with support from an artist tutor at Millennium Gallery's weekly life drawing session.

Elizabeth Llewellyn: Samuel Coleridge-Taylor & Friends

Fri. 1 October 2021

Firth Hall

An evening of music by British composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, performed by an acclaimed soprano singer Elizabeth Llewellyn. Followed by an interview with Elizabeth.

Peddler

Multiple dates

92 Burton Road

Food, music, art. In a former warehouse. At night.

Waitress

Tue. 28 September 2021 — Sat. 2 October 2021

Lyceum Theatre

"Treat yourself to a slice of five-star musical pie” (The Times). Lucie Jones stars in this hit musical comedy as Jenna, a waitress and expert pie-maker who dreams of some happiness in her life.

Sister Wives X Permanent Distraction

Sat. 2 October 2021

Site Gallery

Sheffield-based band Sister Wives will play live within artist Rafaël Rozendaal's immersive installation Permanent Distraction, against large-scale floor-to-ceiling abstract projections.

Spirit of Independence Film Festival 2021

Sat. 2 October 2021

Abbeydale Picture House

The Spirit of Independence Film Festival celebrates the best in fiercely independent filmmaking from around the world.

Shining a Light on Bulbs

Tue. 5 October 2021

Friends of Sheffield Botanical Gardens host an online talk about how bulbs can bring colour throughout the year.

From The Estate

Sat. 2 October 2021 — Tue. 5 October 2021

S1 Artspace

An exhibition of field recordings by Jim Ghedi and photographs by Laura Merrill. Guiding visitors through the green spaces within four council and social estates in Sheffield, and illustratating nature and city in proximity to each other.

The Forbidden Strings

Tue. 5 October 2021

Drama Studio

The UK premiere of a documentary directed by Hasan Noori, about a band formed by Akbar, Soori, Mohammed and Hakim, the children of Afghan parents who fled to Iran. The Forbidden Strings shows the musical foursome struggling to get themselves heard.

Sensoria Shorts

Tue. 5 October 2021

Drama Studio

A selection of short films made in Sheffield or by Sheffield-based artists and musicians. Plus a screening of Time Bascule, a reimagining of Tower Bridge, mixing make-believe with a forgotten chapter of the London landmark's history.

Catch 22 Years

Wed. 6 October 2021

Theatre Deli

A fresh, funny and taboo-smashing take on addiction and recovery, from Katie O'Brien.

UDAGAN

Wed. 6 October 2021

Drama Studio

A duo made up of Saydyy Kuo Fedorova and Oscar South. Bringing together shamanic music and instruments drawn from Saydyy Kuo's culture in the Republic of Sakha in Siberia, along with creative live coding, virtuosic performance and rich orchestration.

Lunchtime Talk: Conditions for Landscape

Wed. 6 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Explore why it become so difficult for artists to respond to landscape in traditional ways in this lunchtime talk. Connected to the current exhibition Earthbound: Contemporary Landscape from the Roberts Institute of Art.

The Empathy Experiment 2.0

Thu. 7 October 2021

Theatre Deli

A blend of poetry and pose asking new questions about our relationship with technology in this modern age. From Canadian poet Rose Condo.

That Long Moonless Chase / その長い月のない追跡 + Race (Daud)

Thu. 7 October 2021

Drama Studio

A double bill of animated short films with live music and Q&A. Featuring a fantastical mash-up based on folkloric legends from Sheffield and Kyoto, and a story of a young boy who sets out to conquer his fear.

Fruitcake – Ten Commandments from the Psych Ward

Fri. 8 October 2021

Theatre Deli

Comic, poet and reformed psychiatric nurse Rob Gee presents a user-friendly guide to losing the plot.

Nikki Iles Jazz Orchestra

Fri. 8 October 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

Award-winning pianist, composer and educator Nikki Iles’ Jazz Orchestra marks a new chapter in a long and distinguished career in British jazz. Hosted by Sheffield Jazz.

Bait + live score from Gwenno and Rhys Edwards

Fri. 8 October 2021

Drama Studio

The 2019 BAFTA-winning Bait is stark depiction of tensions in a Cornish community between a local fisherman and metropolitan incomers. Presented with a live performance of a new score, building on composer and musician Gwenno's original soundtrack.

SensoriaPro

Fri. 8 October 2021

Showroom

Sensoria Festival's annual dedicated industry day – a space for those working in film, music and media to come together, learn from one another, and make new connections.

Lunchtime Tour: Kelham Island Museum

Fri. 8 October 2021

Kelham Island Museum

Hear all about Sheffield's industrial past with this guided tour of Kelham Island Museum.

Sensoria

Sat. 2 October 2021 — Sat. 9 October 2021

Sensoria festival of music and film returns for 2021, presenting a unique mix of performance, live film scores, screenings, exhibitions and music industry activity.

Hedgerow

Multiple dates

Division Street

A creative street market for Sheffield city centre. Filling Division Street with live music and independent retail once a month from August onwards.

Fish Pie: Lost at Shore

Sat. 9 October 2021

Theatre Deli

Alternative comedy cabaret collective Fish Pie return with their biggest show yet, with new characters, original songs and choreography. A surrealist theatrical experience for those who enjoy the likes of the Mighty Boosh and Pee-Wee's Playhouse.

The Afropean Express + live soundtrack by Bare Knuckle Soul + Q&A + short films

Sat. 9 October 2021

S1 Artspace

A short film, music and audio piece by writer and photographer Johny Pitts and Chris ‘Finguz’ Morris. A multi-sensory experience, capturing a trip through locations and train journeys featured in Pitts' book Afropean: Notes From Black Europe.

Grease

Tue. 5 October 2021 — Sat. 9 October 2021

Lyceum Theatre

The much-loved musical is back – grittier and more glamorous than ever.

John Hoyland: The Last Paintings

Sat. 3 July 2021 — Sun. 10 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Born in Sheffield, John Hoyland (1934-2011) is regarded as one of Britain’s leading abstract painters. To commemorate the 10th anniversary of his passing, this new exhibition showcases some of the very last works he created.

Talking Objects

Wed. 13 October 2021

Meet some of the Sheffield Museums team and find out about the stories behind some of their favourite objects in the city's collections. This time, the theme is animals and nature. You are also invited to bring along an object to show.

Sam Lee – with Talking Gigs

Thu. 14 October 2021

Firth Hall

Acclaimed singer Sam Lee comes to Sheffield for a night of live performance and interview. Presented by University of Sheffield Concerts in collaboration with Talking Gigs.

Hexagonal

Fri. 15 October 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

A welcome return to Sheffield Jazz for the sextet Hexagonal, whose exciting, high energy music with African and jazz influences makes for a joyous, uplifting live experience.

How to Stop Fascism – Paul Mason

Fri. 15 October 2021

Octagon Centre, University of Sheffield, Clarkson Street, S10 2TQ

Prompted by an encounter with Brexit and Tommy Robinson supporters, the writer and broadcaster examines the threat of modern fascism – how it morphed since the second world war, what accelerates it and, most importantly, what to do to stop it.

Typical Girls

Fri. 24 September 2021 — Sat. 16 October 2021

Crucible Theatre

Part-gig, part-play, Typical Girls is funny, fierce and furious. Featuring the music of punk band The Slits.

Stories from Sheffield General Cemetery: Artists and Artistes – Laura Alston

Sat. 16 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Historian Laura Alston delivers an illustrated talk exploring the hidden histories of artists and artistes in Victorian and Edwardian Sheffield, by researching the impressive life stories of some of the 87,000 people buried in the General Cemetery.

Ignite Imaginations Creative Writing Walk, with artist Gevi

Sun. 17 October 2021

Sheffield General Cemetery

Take inspiration from the human stories of people buried in the cemetery as well as from the natural environment of the park, to create original poems or the bones of short stories.

Pollen

Multiple dates

Castlegate, S3 8LB

An inner-city flower market. Taking over a corner of Castlegate one Sunday a month with plants, flowers, fresh produce and more – for a celebration of all things botanical.

Dear Sister – Ubah Cristina Ali Farah and Guests

Sun. 17 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Writer and performer Ubah Cristina Ali Farah led a workshop in which participants wrote letters to inspirational women in their lives. Sheffield writers Helen Mort, Debjani Chatterjee and Warda Yassin share their creative responses at this event.

The Building of Bridgewater: breathing new life into old walls

Tue. 19 October 2021

Join Dr Sylvia Travers of RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford for an online talk charting the regeneration of gardens from mud to beautiful, productive and wildlife-friendly spaces.

Manifesto – Bernardine Evaristo

Tue. 19 October 2021

Crucible Theatre

Novelist, poet, screenwriter, essayist, literary critic, professor, member of Black Writers’ Guild and former vice-president of the Royal Society of Literature, Bernardine Evaristo shines a light on her journey as a trailblazer, writer and activist.

Lowlights Tour of Weston Park Museum

Wed. 20 October 2021

Weston Park Museum

Head out on an unconventional tour to discover some fascinating, but lesser-known objects you may never have spotted at Weston Park Museum. You’ll hear tales of counterfeit coins, Victorian typos and even Michael Palin’s pants.

Acoustic Triangle

Thu. 21 October 2021

Firth Hall, Firth Court, Western Bank, S10 2TN

Sheffield Jazz with University of Sheffield Concerts host this award-winning trio, blurring the perceived boundaries between the genres of jazz, classical and folk.

Take it to the Streets: Hidden Voices in Sheffield Archives – Désirée Reynolds and Cheryl Bailey

Thu. 21 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Writer Désirée Reynolds is studying the unsung histories of Black Sheffield residents preserved by the city archives. Désirée and archivist Cheryl Bailey will reveal some of their fascinating discoveries to enrich our understanding of our local past.

The Youth Word Up is Ten! Performance by Young People and Joelle Taylor

Thu. 21 October 2021

Created by Benjamin Zephaniah and developed by Sheffield’s favourite poetry mentor Vicky Morris, The Youth Word Up! celebrates its tenth anniversary. With performances from young people who have been involved over the years, and poet Joelle Taylor.

Ensemble 360 play Dvořák, Martinů and a world premiere

Fri. 22 October 2021

Crucible Theatre

Three centuries of music. Featuring a 19th century classic, a large-scale gem of the 20th century chamber repertoire, and a world premiere composed in 2021.

Trish Clowes – My Iris

Fri. 22 October 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

Sheffield Jazz host a concert from saxophonist Trish Clowes and her band My Iris. Expect brooding tunes with driving grooves, distinctive melodies and inventive shifts in tempo.

Poetry Live – HIVE Poets, Safia Khan, Caroline Bird, Otis Mensah: Hosted by Sile Sibanda

Fri. 22 October 2021

Rotherham Civic Theatre, Catherine Street, Rotherham S65 1EB

No more reminiscing about our pre-pandemic poetry open mics! South Yorkshire poetry community, we have reasons to be excited about the near future. Poetry Live has gathered veteran and up and coming writers for an evening of transformative poetry.

Izzy Gizmo family concert

Multiple dates

Crucible Theatre

Best-selling children’s book Izzy Gizmo is brought to life in this family concert presented by Music in the Round.

Art Class: Glass, Sky and Palm Leaves – Paradise Found!

Multiple dates

Millennium Gallery

Join artist Donna Brewins-Cook for a creative journey into urban paradise – you will be taken on an artistic adventure through historic notions of paradise to present-day ideas.

Disruptive Publishing – Magid Magid in conversation with Dr Tom Payne and Dr Julia Udall

Tue. 26 October 2021

Performance Lab, Arundel Gate, S1 2LQ

Last year, Sheffield’s most loved (former) Lord Mayor, author, and racial and climate justice activist Magid Magid published The Art of Disruption: A Manifesto for Real Change. Join Magid to explore creative and disruptive acts of publishing.

Salt House

Thu. 28 October 2021

Firth Hall

Salt House have been praised by folk bible fRoots for bringing “startling freshness” to the British song tradition. Expect ​​echoes of Pentangle, a touch of Dick Gaughan and murmurs of Scandinavian and Scots.

The Book of Trespass: Crossing the Lines that Divide Us – Nick Hayes

Thu. 28 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

As we learn to obey social norms, most of us start to slowly sacrifice the liberating feeling that comes with roaming free. Campaigner and author Nick Hayes will discuss the history of trespassing laws and ethical issues behind ownership of land.

Creepy Kelham: Family Fun

Thu. 28 October 2021

Kelham Island Museum

Explore Kelham Island Museum after hours with spooky surprises and a trick or treat trail.

Creepy Kelham: After Dark

Thu. 28 October 2021

Kelham Island Museum

Gather your friends for an adventure through Kelham Island Museum’s most haunted areas. You may just bump into a spook or two along the way. For ages 18+ only.

This One Sky Day – Leone Ross in conversation with Désirée Reynolds

Sat. 30 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

Curated by Désirée Reynolds, Black Women Write Now returns with a second stimulating programme on 30 October. As part of the day's events Leone Ross will discuss her work as a writer and her latest novel – a vivid tale that took 10 years to complete.

Earthbound: Contemporary Landscape from the Roberts Institute of Art

Thu. 5 August 2021 — Sun. 31 October 2021

Millennium Gallery

An exhibition investigating our relationship with our environment. With works by contemporary artists including Helen Chadwick, Richard Long, Dan Holdsworth, Miroslaw Balka, Theaster Gates and Berlinde De Bruyckere.

Count Magnus

Sun. 31 October 2021

Drama Studio

M. R. James (1862–1936) was a master of the ghost story. Now, the M.R. James Project is bringing his eerie stories back to life. In this instalment a travel-writer’s over-inquisitiveness leads to a breathless chase from darkest Sweden to rural Essex.

In A Vase by Lianne Mellor

Fri. 8 October 2021 — Sun. 31 October 2021

Exchange Place Studios, Exchange Street, S2 5TR

Painter and allotment holder Lianne Mellor presents an exhibition of new still life paintings inspired by the changing seasons.

Halloween at the Abbeydale Picture House

Sun. 31 October 2021

Abbeydale Picture House

An evening of folk-horror cinema comes to Sheffield's historic Abbeydale Picture House this Halloween.

A Kept Man

Tue. 2 November 2021

Drama Studio

A powerful new musical about a love affair between a gamekeeper and the Lord of the Manor, against the backdrop of the Oscar Wilde trials. This is an exclusive concert preview of the show – with minimal set and costume design, and scripts in hand.

3am Waitress

Wed. 3 November 2021

Drama Studio

A high-energy show incorporating performance poetry, physical theatre and aerial silk, exploring loneliness, detachment and the tenderness of unexpected connections.

Making Tracks

Wed. 3 November 2021

Firth Hall

Making Tracks brings together exceptional young artists from around the world to showcase unique musical traditions and new collaborations.

A Thomas Hardy Songbook

Thu. 4 November 2021

Crucible Theatre

With songs by Benjamin Britten, John Ireland and more. Performed by baritone Roderick Williams and Christopher Glynn on piano.

Natalie Inside Out

Thu. 4 November 2021

Drama Studio

A collaboration between world-class hand-balancer Natalie Reckert and digital artist Mark Morreau. Natalie Inside Out uses technology and video projections to turn our conventional ideas of circus upside down and inside out.

Graig Ogden classical guitar & Miloš Milivojević classical accordion

Sat. 6 November 2021

Crucible Theatre

Classical guitarist Craig Ogden joins classical accordionist Miloš Milivojević to play stunning arrangements by composers including Vivaldi, Scarlatti and Piazzolla.

Julian Joseph piano

Sat. 6 November 2021

Crucible Theatre

"The most significant jazz musician this country has produced for many years, perhaps ever." (The Stage).

Northern Ballet's Merlin

Tue. 2 November 2021 — Sat. 6 November 2021

Lyceum Theatre

Inspired by the story of the mythical wizard, Northern Ballet’s Merlin is a sweeping epic adventure of heartbreak, hope and more than a little magic.

Conspiracy Theory: A Lizard's Tale

Sat. 6 November 2021

Drama Studio

A darkly comic tale of one man’s journey through the conspiracy underworld.
Exploring fake news, why conspiracy theories are more popular than ever, and how all this relates to current issues in the Labour Party.

Concerteenies with Music in the Round

Sat. 6 November 2021

Channing Hall, 45 Surrey Street, S1 2LG

Chart-topping classical guitarist Craig Ogden teams up with award-winning classical accordionist Miloš Milivojević for relaxed concerts for babies and their grown-ups.

Bird Migration: Charlie Parker Centenary Big Band

Fri. 12 November 2021

Crookes Social Club, MulehouseRoad, S10 1TD

A 13-piece ensemble exploring the musical ideas of Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker. An innovative, cross-genre project from critically acclaimed composer and multi-instrumentalist Hans Koller.

The Sensemaker

Mon. 15 November 2021

Drama Studio

A one-person show about a woman battling with an answering machine, trying to meet the impossible expectations of an artificial voice. Mixing dance, theatre and lip-synching to address with irony the fears and frustrations of an interconnected world.

An Air Quality Garden: an educational tool to learn about and combat air pollution

Tue. 16 November 2021

Find out about the establishment of the Air Quality Garden in Sheffield Botanical Gardens. Discover how plants can be used to monitor air quality, and the effects of pollution on human health.

The Cult of Water

Thu. 18 November 2021

Drama Studio

Combining music, animation, archive film and monologue, David Bramwell takes a magical candle-lit odyssey up the river Don in search of its dark secrets.

Rakhi Singh

Thu. 18 November 2021

Firth Hall

Singh is known for taking audiences on a journey through the incredible breadth and range of emotions summoned by a single, solo violin.

Deschanel Gordon Trio

Fri. 19 November 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

Winner of BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020, pianist Deschanel Gordon brings his trio to Sheffield. Playing original tunes influenced by the contemporary London scene and the music of his Jamaican heritage, plus his take on some selected jazz standards.

Scarred For Life

Fri. 19 November 2021

Drama Studio

Join Stephen Brotherstone and Dave Lawrence – the writers behind the acclaimed Scarred For Life book – for a talk about the TV, films, music, comics, board games, books, adverts and, erm, crisps that blighted 1970s and 80s childhoods.

Yorkshire Artspace Open Studios

Sat. 20 November 2021 — Sun. 21 November 2021

Yorkshire Artspace

Peek into some of the most fascinating studios in town and meet their creative residents.

Tim Horton: Chopin Works for solo piano

Fri. 26 November 2021

Crucible Theatre

Chopin composed wonderfully melodic music for solo piano, which is why it is still so popular today. Sit back and enjoy this concert from Music in the Round.

Freddie Gavita Quartet

Fri. 26 November 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

Rising star Freddie Gavita is establishing a reputation as one of the top trumpeters on the UK jazz scene. Expect scintillating grooves, heartfelt ballads and some serious swing. Hosted by Sheffield Jazz.

Sound Junction I

Fri. 26 November 2021 — Sat. 27 November 2021

Firth Hall

Incredible electronic and electro-acoustic music performed through a 360° soundsystem.

The Sheffield Project: Photographs of a Changing City

Thu. 20 May 2021 — Sun. 28 November 2021

Weston Park Museum

An exhibition of work by socially-engaged photographers from the late 1980s and 90s. Capturing a significant turning point in Sheffield's regeneration and reflecting both the hope and hard realities of the time.

Fournier Trio

Thu. 2 December 2021

Firth Hall

One of the leading young chamber ensembles in the UK.

Clark Tracey Sextet

Fri. 3 December 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

With over 40 years in jazz, Clark Tracey leads his sextet of gifted young musicians through bebop and post-bop. Hosted by Sheffield Jazz.

Ensemble 360 play Bartók and Ligeti

Sat. 4 December 2021

Crucible Theatre

Passionate, thrilling music rooted in Hungary's folk music traditions, heard in the works of Béla Bartók and György Ligeti.

Ella Taylor plus Dorothy Ker, Dominic McHugh & Renee Timmers

Thu. 9 December 2021

Firth Hall

An evening of music lectures and Q&As hosted by University of Sheffield Concerts. Followed by a performance from rising young soprano Ella Taylor.

Yazz Ahmed Quartet

Fri. 10 December 2021

Crookes Social Club, Mulehouse Road, S10 1TD

Yazz Ahmed and her quartet perform music from her latest album. A celebration of female courage, determination and creativity, blending Western and Middle Eastern influences. Hosted by Sheffield Jazz.

Awake Arise: A Christmas Show For Our Times

Sat. 18 December 2021

Firth Hall

Traditional songs, folk carols, spoken word and newly written music to galvanise and brighten the winter season, Awake Arise is a warm gift to the wintertime from five of the most engaging and celebrated performers on the English folk scene.

A Christmas Carol

Sun. 19 December 2021

Drama Studio

Join Ebenezer Scrooge on his supernatural journey of redemption through the past, present and yet-to-come. Storytelling and a live violin score will bring to life the atmosphere of Victorian London, as the ghosts of Christmas return from the dead.

Rafaël Rozendaal – Permanent Distraction

Thu. 23 September 2021 — Thu. 23 December 2021

Site Gallery

A major new exhibition from Dutch-Brazilian artist Rafaël Rozendaal. With immersive, floor-to-ceiling website installations, exploring the slippage between physical and digital realities.

Precision as a State of Mind: Sculptures by Mark Firth

Fri. 3 September 2021 — Sat. 15 January 2022

Graves Gallery

The Graves Gallery reopens after its refurbishment with a new exhibition celebrating the work of acclaimed sculptor Mark Firth.