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Events and festivals

Bristol is a lively place with festivals and parties happening every week throughout the city. We thought it'd be a good idea to speak to Jo Bailey of Bailey Balloons, about her favourite bits of Bristol.

Read the interview here

Bristol is proud to host a packed programme of events with an exciting mix of music, literature, entertainment and outdoor fun. No matter what time of year you visit, you’ll be guaranteed to find an event that suits every taste and age group.

See below for details on forthcoming events. For a full catalogue of what’s on in Bristol, use the Search events tool on the right.

This Month

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Openings

Date

12th Apr 2014-21st Sep 2014

Jeremy Deller’s English Magic was commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013....

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

7th May 2014-10th Aug 2014

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Openings

Date

24th May 2014-7th Sep 2014

The exhibition, Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board takes visitors on a journey that explores the world which lies...

The Bristol Shakespeare Festival 2014

The Bristol Shakespeare Festival 2014

Openings

Date

11th Jul 2014-27th Jul 2014

Bristol Shakespeare Festival returns once again with an array of multi-media events

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Nov 2014

The Promise is an exhibition project about the relationship between a city and its residents that takes place in the...

Hamlet Underground at the Bristol Shakespeare Festival

Hamlet Underground at the Bristol Shakespeare Festival

Openings

Date

21st Jul 2014-26th Jul 2014

Hamlet Undergound is a 75-minute adaptation of Shakespeare’s Hamlet appearing at Bristol Shakespeare Festival

Brouhaha Comedy Week 2014 at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Brouhaha Comedy Week 2014 at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Openings

Date

21st Jul 2014-26th Jul 2014

Twelve brand new stand-up shows from some of the most inventive acts on the UK comedy circuit.

Theatre: Singin' in the Rain at the Bristol Hippodrome

Theatre: Singin' in the Rain at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

22nd Jul 2014-9th Aug 2014

Direct from the West End, this critically acclaimed production of Singin’ in the Rain is a smash hit with critics and...

Food! At-Bristol exhibition

Food! At-Bristol exhibition

Openings

Date

23rd Jul 2014-31st Aug 2014

Get your tastebuds ready as At-Bristol launch their latest hands-on exhibition!  Pop corn using light energy, grind your...

Summer Adventures at Bristol Aquarium

Summer Adventures at Bristol Aquarium

Openings

Date

23rd Jul 2014-31st Aug 2014

Go on three summer holidays this year and become an Aquarium Adventurer!

The Tiger and the Moustache at Brewery Theatre

The Tiger and the Moustache at Brewery Theatre

Openings

Date

24th Jul 2014-26th Jul 2014

Saikat Ahamed’s acclaimed, energetic and vibrant play, which started life in the Brewery Theatre last year, is back at...

Music: Eels at Colston Hall

Music: Eels at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

25th Jul 2014-25th Jul 2014

EELS make their long-awaited return to Colston Hall as they head out on tour with their new album, ’The Cautionary Tales of...

Bristol Thai Festival

Bristol Thai Festival

Openings

Date

26th Jul 2014-27th Jul 2014

The Bristol Thai Festival will bring cultural entertainment, education, tradition and colour to Bristol this July.

Bristol Proms 2014 at The Bristol Old Vic

Bristol Proms 2014 at The Bristol Old Vic

Openings

Date

28th Jul 2014-2nd Aug 2014

Bristol Old Vic and Universal Music’s U-Live present Bristol Proms 2014, a live classical music festival like no other.

Next Month

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Openings

Date

12th Apr 2014-21st Sep 2014

Jeremy Deller’s English Magic was commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013....

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

7th May 2014-10th Aug 2014

Living City: The Anatomy of a Green Capital at The Architecture Centre

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Openings

Date

24th May 2014-7th Sep 2014

The exhibition, Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board takes visitors on a journey that explores the world which lies...

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Nov 2014

The Promise is an exhibition project about the relationship between a city and its residents that takes place in the...

Theatre: Singin' in the Rain at the Bristol Hippodrome

Theatre: Singin' in the Rain at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

22nd Jul 2014-9th Aug 2014

Direct from the West End, this critically acclaimed production of Singin’ in the Rain is a smash hit with critics and...

Food! At-Bristol exhibition

Food! At-Bristol exhibition

Openings

Date

23rd Jul 2014-31st Aug 2014

Get your tastebuds ready as At-Bristol launch their latest hands-on exhibition!  Pop corn using light energy, grind your...

Summer Adventures at Bristol Aquarium

Summer Adventures at Bristol Aquarium

Openings

Date

23rd Jul 2014-31st Aug 2014

Go on three summer holidays this year and become an Aquarium Adventurer!

Bristol Proms 2014 at The Bristol Old Vic

Bristol Proms 2014 at The Bristol Old Vic

Openings

Date

28th Jul 2014-2nd Aug 2014

Bristol Old Vic and Universal Music’s U-Live present Bristol Proms 2014, a live classical music festival like no other.

Special sunset opening at Bristol Zoo Gardens

Special sunset opening at Bristol Zoo Gardens

Openings

Date

1st Aug 2014-1st Aug 2014

On Friday 30 May, the Zoo will host its first of many ‘Sunset Special’ evenings, offering visitors a chance to explore the...

Redfest

Redfest

Openings

Date

2nd Aug 2014-2nd Aug 2014

Redfest is a free community arts festival for the communities of East Bristol

South Gloucestershire Show

South Gloucestershire Show

Openings

Date

2nd Aug 2014-3rd Aug 2014

The South Gloucestershire Show is the counties lifestyle and leisure Event for 2014

Make Sunday Special

Make Sunday Special

Openings

Date

3rd Aug 2014-3rd Aug 2014

Make your Sundays special this summer. Explore the streets for arts, music, street games and entertainment in the Old City...

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

Openings

Dates

7th Aug 2014-10th Aug 2014

Bristol will play host to Europe’s largest ballooning event, an amazing spectacle and FREE event for the whole family from...

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Openings

Date

9th Aug 2014-9th Aug 2014

Mullion Cove will be collaborating with Brunel’s ss Great Britain again this year by bringing four seasonal markets to...

Alice in Wonderland - at Wild Place

Alice in Wonderland - at Wild Place

Openings

Date

9th Aug 2014-9th Aug 2014

Don’t be late for a very important date with Alice in Wonderland at the Wild Place Project on Saturday 9 August.

Giggle for Gorillas at Bristol Zoo Gardens

Giggle for Gorillas at Bristol Zoo Gardens

Openings

Date

9th Aug 2014-9th Aug 2014

Bristol Zoo Gardens is set to welcome one of Bristol’s funniest and most successful comedians, Russell Howard to do a...

Comedy: Russell Howard - Wonderbox at the Bristol Hippodrome

Comedy: Russell Howard - Wonderbox at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

13th Aug 2014-16th Aug 2014

After a massive sold out 2012 Tour, The Dreamboys are back with a brand new show and tour for 2014.

Shrek the Musical at the Bristol Hippodrome

Shrek the Musical at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

19th Aug 2014-7th Sep 2014

Based on the award-winning DreamWorks animation film, Shrek the Musical is this year’s must-see show for all the family.

Love Food Festival - Treefest at Westonbirt Arboretum

Love Food Festival - Treefest at Westonbirt Arboretum

Openings

Date

23rd Aug 2014-25th Aug 2014

Food and nature go hand in hand and Love Food Festival will be recognising and celebrating that at Westonbirt Arboretum’s...

September

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Exhibition: Jeremy Deller – English Magic at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Openings

Date

12th Apr 2014-21st Sep 2014

Jeremy Deller’s English Magic was commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2013....

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Exhibition: Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board at M Shed

Openings

Date

24th May 2014-7th Sep 2014

The exhibition, Wallace & Gromit from the drawing board takes visitors on a journey that explores the world which lies...

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Nov 2014

The Promise is an exhibition project about the relationship between a city and its residents that takes place in the...

Shrek the Musical at the Bristol Hippodrome

Shrek the Musical at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

19th Aug 2014-7th Sep 2014

Based on the award-winning DreamWorks animation film, Shrek the Musical is this year’s must-see show for all the family.

Make Sunday Special

Make Sunday Special

Openings

Date

7th Sep 2014-7th Sep 2014

Make your Sundays special this summer. Explore the streets for arts, music, street games and entertainment in the Old City...

Chas and Dave at Bristol Hippodrome

Chas and Dave at Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

9th Sep 2014-9th Sep 2014

Chas & Dave began writing and performing songs together in 1972, having been friends since the early sixties and on Tuesday...

Grape and Grain Festival at Millennium Square

Grape and Grain Festival at Millennium Square

Openings

Date

12th Sep 2014-14th Sep 2014

Bristol’s first Grape and Grain Festival opens September 2014 at Millennium Sq on the Harbourside. Bodacious beers, fine...

Bristol Biennial 2014: Crossing the Line

Bristol Biennial 2014: Crossing the Line

Openings

Date

12th Sep 2014-21st Sep 2014

The Bristol Biennial 2014: Crossing the Line, is an international festival for contemporary arts.

Bristol Doors Open Day 2014

Bristol Doors Open Day 2014

Openings

Date

13th Sep 2014-13th Sep 2014

Many of Bristol's significant contemporary and historic buildings open their doors to the general public.

Barnum at the Bristol Hippodrome

Barnum at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

16th Sep 2014-27th Sep 2014

This exhilarating musical follows the irrepressible imagination and dreams of Phineas T Barnum, America’s Greatest Showman,...

Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival

Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival

Openings

Date

16th Sep 2014-21st Sep 2014

Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival is the longest running competitive short film and animation festival in the UK.

Rigoletto on the Big Screen at Millennium Square

Rigoletto on the Big Screen at Millennium Square

Openings

Date

17th Sep 2014-17th Sep 2014

Never attended or seen an opera before? Then this is your chance to watch a world-class opera performed live for free.

Chipping Sodbury Mop Fair

Chipping Sodbury Mop Fair

Openings

Date

19th Sep 2014-20th Sep 2014

The Chipping Sodbury bi-annual Mop Fair

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Openings

Date

21st Sep 2014-21st Sep 2014

Why not join Bristol Ferries on a cruise through the Avon Gorge with Ed Drewitt, naturalist and broadcaster for the BBC as...

Bristol Half Marathon

Bristol Half Marathon

Openings

Date

21st Sep 2014-21st Sep 2014

The Bristol half marathon will take place on Sunday 21st September 2014.

Riverdance at the Bristol Hippodrome

Riverdance at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

30th Sep 2014-5th Oct 2014

This 20th Anniversary UK Tour, gives Riverdance fans old and new, the opportunity to celebrate an incredible milestone for...

October

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Nov 2014

The Promise is an exhibition project about the relationship between a city and its residents that takes place in the...

Riverdance at the Bristol Hippodrome

Riverdance at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

30th Sep 2014-5th Oct 2014

This 20th Anniversary UK Tour, gives Riverdance fans old and new, the opportunity to celebrate an incredible milestone for...

Music: Peter Andre at Colston Hall

Music: Peter Andre at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

1st Oct 2014-1st Oct 2014

Pop star, reality TV regular Peter Andre returns to Colston Hall to present a brilliantly exhausting show filled with his...

Comedy: Lee Mack - Hit the Road Mack at Colston Hall

Comedy: Lee Mack - Hit the Road Mack at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

2nd Oct 2014-4th Oct 2014

The star of Not Going Out and Would I Lie To You? cuts to the funny bone like a knife in his new live show.

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Openings

Date

5th Oct 2014-5th Oct 2014

Why not join Bristol Ferries on a cruise through the Avon Gorge with Ed Drewitt, naturalist and broadcaster for the BBC as...

Family: Peppa Pig's Big Splash at the Bristol Hippodrome

Family: Peppa Pig's Big Splash at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

7th Oct 2014-8th Oct 2014

Come and join Peppa and her friends for another all-singing, all-dancing adventure full of songs, games and muddy...

Puccini's Madame Butterfly at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Puccini's Madame Butterfly at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Openings

Date

8th Oct 2014-25th Oct 2014

One of the most popular and best-loved operas in the repertoire, in Madame Butterfly Puccini took a seemingly simple story...

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-1st Mar 2015

M Shed, In commemoration of the start of World War 1, M Shed will present this major exhibition examining the impact of...

Music: Elaine Paige - 50th Anniversary Farewell Tour at Colston Hall

Music: Elaine Paige - 50th Anniversary Farewell Tour at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-11th Oct 2014

The first lady of Musical Theatre

Bristol 24-Hour International Pedal Car Race

Bristol 24-Hour International Pedal Car Race

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-12th Oct 2014

Streets around College Green are to be transformed into an international 24-hour race track – for pedal cars.

Comedy: Joan Rivers at Colston Hall

Comedy: Joan Rivers at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

12th Oct 2014-12th Oct 2014

Internationally renowned comedienne Joan Rivers brings her distinctive brand of irreverent comedy to the UK

Murder Mystery Dinner at Brunel's ss Great Britain

Murder Mystery Dinner at Brunel's ss Great Britain

Openings

Date

17th Oct 2014-17th Oct 2014

Board the ss Great Britain and immerse yourself in a plot of murder most foul.

Wildscreen Festival

Wildscreen Festival

Openings

Date

19th Oct 2014-24th Oct 2014

Internationally acknowledged as the most prestigious and influential wildlife film festival in the world.

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Openings

Date

25th Oct 2014-25th Oct 2014

Mullion Cove will be collaborating with Brunel’s ss Great Britain again this year by bringing four seasonal markets to...

Love Food Autumn Festival at Paintworks

Love Food Autumn Festival at Paintworks

Openings

Date

26th Oct 2014-26th Oct 2014

Love Food Festival will go back to where it all began once again to welcome one of our favourite times of the year.

Sister Act at Bristol Hippodrome

Sister Act at Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

28th Oct 2014-1st Nov 2014

From producers Whoopi Goldberg and Stage Entertainment (Hairspray, High School Musical) the smash hit musical comedy...

November

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Exhibition: The Promise at The Arnolfini

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Nov 2014

The Promise is an exhibition project about the relationship between a city and its residents that takes place in the...

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-1st Mar 2015

M Shed, In commemoration of the start of World War 1, M Shed will present this major exhibition examining the impact of...

Sister Act at Bristol Hippodrome

Sister Act at Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

28th Oct 2014-1st Nov 2014

From producers Whoopi Goldberg and Stage Entertainment (Hairspray, High School Musical) the smash hit musical comedy...

Ballet: Coppelia at the Bristol Hippodrome

Ballet: Coppelia at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

4th Nov 2014-8th Nov 2014

The comic family tale of an eccentric toymaker and his mechanical doll.

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Wildlife Tour of The Avon Gorge with Bristol Ferry Boats

Openings

Date

15th Nov 2014-15th Nov 2014

Why not join Bristol Ferries on a cruise through the Avon Gorge with Ed Drewitt, naturalist and broadcaster for the BBC as...

Top Hat at the Bristol Hippodrome

Top Hat at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

18th Nov 2014-29th Nov 2014

Top Hat brings the glamour of Hollywood’s golden age and the glorious, tap-dancing magic of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers...

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Openings

Date

26th Nov 2014-11th Jan 2015

101 Dalmatians at Tobacco Factory Theatre

Enchanted Christmas at Westonbirt Arboretum

Enchanted Christmas at Westonbirt Arboretum

Openings

Date

28th Nov 2014-21st Dec 2014

Westonbirt Arboretum's Enchanted Christmas features a spectacular one mile illuminated trail, highlighting the striking...

Comedy: Dave Gorman - Get Straight to the Point, The Powerpoint at Colston Hall

Comedy: Dave Gorman - Get Straight to the Point, The Powerpoint at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

28th Nov 2014-28th Nov 2014

The wonderfully innovative comedy mind is back with a brand new live show that promises more of his unique blend of stand-up...

December

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Bridge150 at the Architecture Centre

Openings

Date

19th Jul 2014-9th Dec 2014

Inspired by this anniversary, Bridge150! presents 150 days of exciting activities to inspire, inform and involve everyone in...

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-1st Mar 2015

M Shed, In commemoration of the start of World War 1, M Shed will present this major exhibition examining the impact of...

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Openings

Date

26th Nov 2014-11th Jan 2015

101 Dalmatians at Tobacco Factory Theatre

Enchanted Christmas at Westonbirt Arboretum

Enchanted Christmas at Westonbirt Arboretum

Openings

Date

28th Nov 2014-21st Dec 2014

Westonbirt Arboretum's Enchanted Christmas features a spectacular one mile illuminated trail, highlighting the striking...

Comedy: Alan Davies - Little Victories at Colston Hall

Comedy: Alan Davies - Little Victories at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

5th Dec 2014-5th Dec 2014

One of the best stand-up comics out there is back with its follow-up, Little Victories

Chipping Sodbury Victorian Day

Chipping Sodbury Victorian Day

Openings

Date

5th Dec 2014-5th Dec 2014

Chipping Sodbury's annual festive Victorian Day

Pantomime: Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome

Pantomime: Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

6th Dec 2014-5th Jan 2015

The countdown is on to the ultimate tail of wags to riches, Dick Whittington - this year’s award winning spectacular family...

Christmas Nativity Plays at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm

Christmas Nativity Plays at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm

Openings

Date

13th Dec 2014-13th Dec 2014

Date

20th Dec 2014-20th Dec 2014

Celebrate the festive season this year by coming along to the very popular nativity play featuring live animals and a real...

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Seasonal Markets at the ss Great Britain

Openings

Date

13th Dec 2014-13th Dec 2014

Mullion Cove will be collaborating with Brunel’s ss Great Britain again this year by bringing four seasonal markets to...

Bootleg Beatles Xmas Show at Colston Hall

Bootleg Beatles Xmas Show at Colston Hall

Openings

Date

19th Dec 2014-19th Dec 2014

The hugely popular tribute band return to the Hall to perform “flawless” renditions of The Beatles’ best-loved hits.

January

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

WW1 Exhibition: Moved by Conflict at M Shed

Openings

Date

11th Oct 2014-1st Mar 2015

M Shed, In commemoration of the start of World War 1, M Shed will present this major exhibition examining the impact of...

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

101 Dalmations at Tobacco Factory Theatres

Openings

Date

26th Nov 2014-11th Jan 2015

101 Dalmatians at Tobacco Factory Theatre

Pantomime: Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome

Pantomime: Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome

Openings

Date

6th Dec 2014-5th Jan 2015

The countdown is on to the ultimate tail of wags to riches, Dick Whittington - this year’s award winning spectacular family...