Here’s a selection of superb ways to spend your time in Birmingham during show week:
What better way to kick off Friday night than you and your mates piling into this legendary comedy club for a few top-rate laughs. The Glee Club prides itself on handpicked line-ups featuring genius comics from the UK circuit, so this is your chance to see the upcoming stars before they get on TV.
Where: The Glee Club, Arcadian Centre, Birmingham
When: Friday 20th & Saturday 21st October, 8pm
Cost: £15.95 regular; £10 student
Springing up in the place of Gatecrasher, PRYZM opened in 2016 and is just as epic as its predecessor. Inside, you’ll find a huge main room playing the best in dance and chart pop, while the venue’s three smaller rooms offer up everything from classic RnB to Eighties pop to indie rock – something for everyone, no matter what your preference. With over 50 booths dotted about the venue, you can really splash out and make it a night to remember. Birmingham knows how to party, so bring your dancing shoes.
Where: Broad Street, Birmingham
When: Thursday, Friday, Saturday
Cost: Under £10
Love tasty street food? Good beer? Festival atmosphere? Then there’s no better way to spend your Friday or Saturday night than sampling mouth-watering meals and the best beverages at Digbeth Dining Club. Reflecting the multi-cultural heritage and laid-back vibe of the city, this 18+ food fair offers up cuisine from across the world – spicy Habanero-sauce burritos, anyone? Grab something tasty while DJs spin funk and soul to get your weekend started! And when you’re ready to dance, head into the Spot*light venue next door, where hip hop, house and indie plays until the early hours.
Where: Spot*light, Lower Trinity St, Birmingham
When: Friday and Saturday, 5pm to midnight
The bar scene in Birmingham is unique, to say the least. And no venue sums this up than the eccentric Jekyll and Hyde. This cocktail bar boasts Victorian decor, a relaxed after-work vibe and, perhaps most importantly, an extensive arsenal of over 80 gins! No matter what day of the week, trying a couple of strange concoctions in this age-old boozer is a must. The only choice is whether you wile away the night in Mr. Hyde’s Main Bar or Dr. Jekyll’s Gin Parlour…
Where: Colmore Row, Birmingham
When: Midday to Midnight (1am Saturday)
Having worked with grime luminaries such as JME, Wretch 32 and Ghetts, the MOBO Award-winning Shakka will bring his unique brand of soul-inflected RnB to one of Birmingham’s best venues. The city prides itself on its music scene, so why not spend Saturday night bouncing to loose hip hop beats in the cosy and cool Institute2? Tickets can be purchased here.
Where: O2 Institute2, Digbeth, Birmingham
When: Saturday 21st October, 6pm
Cost: £18.50 (general admission)
Whether you’re a die-hard scratch DJ or occasionally enjoy spinning wax on your decks at home, the city has loads of great record stores stocking the best in dance, hip hop, RnB, and more. Your first stop should be DJ Tech Direct, which is the best bet for underground house, nu disco and techno. For more of an all-rounder, Traxx Records stocks everything from reggae to dance, classic 60s pop to modern indie. Or, if you like a slice of history as you browse, check out Swordfish Records, which has a rich tradition of promoting acts from the Birmingham scene and beyond, including the ground-breaking 1988 acid house track ‘Jesus Loves The Acid’ by The Ecstasy Club.
Where: All over!
Cost: FREE (If you can resist, that is.)
One of the city’s busiest nightlife spots, the Water’s Edge is a picturesque canal-side collection of cafes, bars and restaurants. Surrounded by venues and theatres, close to the city’s main party area (Broad Street), and bustling just about every night of the week, Brindley Place is the ideal way to start your night out – whether you’re grabbing food, watching some live music or heading to a club.
Where: Brindley Place, Westside, Birmingham
When: 8am-Midnight (1am weekends)