Summer in Bristol will be a very different beast this year. Due to lockdown, most of the city’s staple summer events have been cancelled or postponed, including Harbour Festival, St Paul’s Carnival and Bristol Pride. However, a number of organisers have taken to the internet and are offering top-notch entertainment through your computer screen instead. Read on to find out about some of the hottest (virtual) events happening in Bristol this summer!
The heart of theatre in the city, Bristol Old Vic, is heading online to bring some truly brilliant shows into your living room. Over the summer the Old Vic will release a new show on its YouTube channel every couple of weeks – they will be free to watch for a limited time only, and there will be the opportunity to donate if you wish. Shows include Messiah, The Grinning Man and A Monster Calls.
Last weekend, Colston Hall hosted Bristol Takeover Online, a 9-hour livestream of music from Bristol-based artists and special guests, raising money for local venues and musicians. Although the show has ended, it should be available to watch online soon if you missed it, and the Crowdfunder page is still open if you wish to donate and support the Bristol music scene.
In April of this year, Bristol’s much-loved Slapstick Festival went ahead, renamed Laughter in Lockdown. The festival was a compilation of recordings from previous Slapstick Festival events of the last few years, and the videos are still available to watch online. They include conversation and comedy from stars such as Harry Hill, Robin Ince, John Cleese, Tim Vine and Victoria Wood.
Although we can’t visit the zoo in person at the moment, we can still get our animal fix by attending the Stories from the Field lecture series hosted by Bristol Zoological Society. Every two weeks a scientist working in conservation gives a lecture about what it’s like to work in the field, from tracking gorillas in Equatorial Guinea to searching for frogs in Costa Rican rainforests. Tune in to live events and catch up with the full lecture series on their website.
A number of Bristol’s top attractions are open for business online. You can visit all sorts of iconic places in the city through your computer, including We The Curious, SS Great Britain and a variety of museums and stately homes, and even take a virtual ferry tour of the harbour. So even if you can’t visit those places yourself, you can still take a virtual ‘day trip’!
This summer may not be business as usual in Bristol, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had in the city, all from the comfort of your own home.
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Cover photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash