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What's On? A Guide to Bristol in December

A short guide to some of the exciting arts events taking place across Bristol in December

Featured Image: Epigram

By Gabriella Adaway, First Year, Theatre and Performance Studies

Despite colder days and darker nights, there is still plenty to do in Bristol. From theatre trips, book talks and art installations – I have compiled a list of some of the top things to do in the city this time of year.


The newest take on Oliver Twist is coming to the stage at the Tobacco Factory Theatre from the 1st of December to the 21st January. From Olivier award winning playwright Adam Peck and director Heidi Vaughan, the classic story of Oliver Twist and the Artful Dodger is being told like never before. Performances include relaxed performances, audio described, BSL interpreted and socially distanced shows. Tickets start from just £12.

Returning to the Tobacco Factory at Spielman Theatre, Sisters of Shesus present Christmas At Mum’s. Showing from 8th to the 30th December, the Shesus has abandoned the twins all alone on Christmas, so where do they go? Mums of course! Expect karaoke, a prawn ring, Mary Berry and lots of laughs. Tickets range from £15 to £17.  

Two women in black robes and white headscarf holding a person on their back

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Via @shesusandthesisters on Instagram. Photo by Giles Smith, @giloscope on Instagram.

Bristol Old Vic Theatre School presents Sondheim’s Into the Woods at the Redgrave theatre in Clifton for a limited run between 28th November and 7th December. Into the Woods is a musical that intertwines classic fairytales such as "Little Red Riding Hood", "Jack and the Bean Stalk" and "Cinderella". The production is performed by their BA Professional Acting students.  Tickets start from £12.  

Book Talks

Waterstones are hosting a wealth of author’s this December across two of their Bristol Stores.  

On Friday the 1st December, at their Broadmead store in the Galleries, spend the evening with parliamentary sketch writer John Crace as he talks about his new book, Depraved New World.  

If you celebrate Christmas, or even if you don’t, on the 2nd December, Waterstones Clifton is inviting a wide range of local authors for a late-night shopping event. Some authors include Jane Shemilt, author of Her Secrets (her latest thriller), Emily Koch, who is a former Waterstones 'Book of the Month' author, and AA Abbott, writer of psychological thrillers set in Clifton.  

The evening will include mince pies, mulled wine, present wrapping and, of course, books!  

On the 6th of December, Andy Clark is presenting his new book The Experience Machine about the advancement of research into cognitive science surrounding brain development. Clark will be discussing his new ground-breaking research with philosopher Julian Baggini.  Tickets start from just £8. 


Lumosphere is a new light show taking place in Bristol on limited days throughout December. With a combination of new technology, nature and light, this exhibition is a walking trail enabling a memorable and immersive experience this winter. On dates 8th, 9th, 10th, 15th, 16th and 17th you can find tickets online. The Lumosphere is situated along Leigh Court stables. Tickets for over 18s are £12.50.  

Two exhibitions on going at the Bristol Museum are Concealed/Reveal, a showcase of disabled, D/deaf and neurodiverse stories throughout the museum. Featuring world famous artists like Henri Matisse and local performers such as Patrick Cotter O’Brien, artists are sharing their experiences and stories.

Also returning to Bristol Museum is Wildlife Photographer of the Year. An exhibition showcasing the best of wildlife from over 95 countries. It features videos, soundscapes and expert knowledge on wildlife and the natural world.  

So, wrap up warm and enjoy all Bristol has to offer this December.