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Arts & Theatre

Arts & Theatre

If you’re an art lover, Bristol’s got you covered. From community arts organisations to digital media hotspots, from compelling live performances to installations in unusual spaces, Bristol is a city to get inspired! If you don’t know where to start, we’ve picked out the top spots.
 
Bristol’s thriving arts scene is committed to giving back. Acta Community Theatre makes theatre accessible to everyone, they work to engage communities and audiences who rarely have the chance to attend the theatre. The city isn’t short of learning opportunities either - Bristol Folk House holds part-time courses and classes in arts and crafts, pottery, writing, languages, music, dance, drama, personal development and much more. If poetry’s more your thing, Poetry Can is a registered charity developing engagement with poetry across the South West Region through events, education projects, training and involvement with Bristol Poetry Festival. Filmmakers of Bristol are also doing their part; Big Screen Bristol is a free film resource located in Millennium Square and operated by At-Bristol Science Centre. Local Bristolians, as well as visitors to the city, can drop in and see a variety of screenings, from live theatre to sporting events.
 
If you’re a fan of local, contemporary and visual art, Here Gallery is a great find. Originally a pop-up exhibition space, the Here gallery displays work by local artists. For those on a tight budget, the Bristol Affordable Art Fair attracts over 50 galleries who sell original contemporary artworks for as little as £50. Walking fans can find lots of art trails throughout Bristol, Totterdown Front Room is the oldest art trail in Bristol, attracting over 200 artists who display work in their homes and studios. In a city that celebrates local artists, it’s only natural to check out the street art scene. Having started as a monthly live graffiti and hip hop night, Weapon of Choice has since evolved into Bristol’s first dedicated Graffiti and Street Art Gallery.
 
Bristol is also home to some of Europe’s leading art galleries, such as the Arnolfini, Spike Island, and the Royal West of England Academy. If you are looking for interesting contemporary art in unusual spaces, the joint crown goes to the Edwardian Cloakroom, a former public toilet and the Cube, an arts venue and social wellbeing enterprise with a colourful history.
 
For the theatre-luvvies out there, Bristol has an eclectic mix of theatres and performance spaces. The ultra-grand Bristol Hippodrome is the ideal stop for West End and Broadway fans. And of course, where would Bristol be without the Bristol Old Vic? It’s the longest continuously running theatre in the UK boasting a 350-strong young company and a theatre school which provides world-class training. Last, but not least, let’s not forget Bristol’s iconic Tobacco Factory Theatres, dedicated to producing and presenting the best of theatre in their Factory Theatre as well as in unique, intimate spaces across the city.

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