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What's on? A look at Bristol's art scene in October and November

Rachel Bronnert takes us through some of the upcoming art and cultural events in the wider city.

By Rachel Bronnert, Arts Editor

One of the many things I love about Bristol is that it feels like there is always something going on. To be a little more specific, Bristol’s art scene is so varied and vibrant that as an art lover, there is always something to be excited about. Whether that is a new theatre show, gallery exhibitions, street art or whole festivals celebrating movements of creativity and culture. Within the wider city there is a multitude of artistic talent that as an arts team we love to celebrate and explore.

This article aims to give a succinct run down of some of the events running throughout October and November that you can attend. Of course this list isn’t complete or exclusive, so if there are any events that you yourself are looking to attend this October and November, then do get in touch on our Facebook page or through our email Otherwise then, here are some of the incredible events you can look forward to this season.

I may be showing a little bias here, but the Bristol Old Vic on Kings Street is one of my favorite venues in the city. This month they have a new show called Choir Boy, running from the 12th of October till the 11th of November. A story of a young black gay student leading a gospel choir at all all-boys school in America. After this a new production Arabian Nights will begin on November the 23rd and run till the 6th of January! This in turn, tells the story of Schere, who through the power of storytelling wants to liberate her fellow women in the kingdom.

Image Courtesy Unsplash, Martyna Bober

In the meantime, Circus City, the UKs largest program of contemporary circus, is here in Bristol from the 1st till the 22nd of October. One of the highlights of their vast program is their feminist adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s Tess of the d’Urbervilles. The show will involve shifting walls, ropes and cloths to convey the story’s messages about love, desire, consent, power and loss. All the different events can be explored on their website:

Along with the festival scene, Platforma Festival 2023 is taking place in southwest England and many of the events will be here in Bristol! From the 1st of October till the 5th of November there will be a range of events aiming to celebrate the arts, refugees, and migration.

Image courtesy of Pam Beddard

The Tobacco Factory in Bristol is another key venue in celebrating the city’s incredible theatre scene. Comedian Mark Thomas' England&Son is set to be in the Tobacco factory from the 17th-19th of October. While from the 4th of November till the 11th, a performance of Jekyll and Hyde is due! Written by Evan Placey and based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s original novel, this is one too look forward too!

Afrika Eye is also set to return to Bristol from the 14th till the 22nd of November, this being the southwest’s biggest celebration of African cinema. The festival will have events in different venues all over the city, including the Arnolfini, Watershed, Trinity Arts and more. Check out the program for all the exciting events coming up:

This is by no means an extensive list. Bristol is a city bustling with vibrancy and life, so one article could not celebrate and draw your attention to it all. However, I hope this has given you a surface level view of some of the events going on and just how many artistic opportunities there are in the city.

Featured image:Unsplash, Mikey Harris

 Are you planning on attending any of these events in the next couple months?