29 Manchester events worth leaving the house for in February
ManchesterViews-Great Northern c Tobias Alexander

What with Valentine’s Day, Pancake Day and Chinese New Year, February is a busy old month in Manchester.

From film and theatre to live music, cool club nights, speed dating with a difference, and a bottomless boozy brunch, here’s our pick of 29 great events worth leaving the house for. Well, it is a leap year.

1 – 8 Feb: 25% off food at Sakana – Celebrate Chinese New Year with Sakana, and you’ll get 25% off food from 1 – 8 Feb (excluding Sat 6 Feb) when you quote CNY25. (1 – 8 Feb excl 6 Feb, Sakana, 23 Peter Street, M2 5QR – more info)

2 – 6 Feb: Macbeth – John Heffernan (Oppenheimer; Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell) and Anna Maxwell Martin (South Riding; Poppy Shakespeare) lead the company in Carrie Cracknell and Lucy Guerin’s ambitious new staging of Macbeth at HOME. (Evenings Tues 2 – Sat 6 Feb, HOME, 2 Tony Wilson Place, M15 4FN – more info)

4 Feb: Chinese New Year banquet at Yu – New restaurant Yu in Alderley Edge are hosting a Chinese New Year banquet for one night only on 4 Feb at £65, with a bespoke menu created by Victor Yu. Dishes include deconstructed Crispy Duck and Pancakes, and Honey Roasted Char Sui with Shanghai Pak Choi. (Thurs 4 Feb, Yu, London Rd, Alderley Edge, SK9 7QD – yualderleyedge.com)

4 – 6 Feb: A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing – The multi-award winning, sold-out hit of the 2014 Dublin Theatre Festival and The 2015 Edinburgh Fringe, Annie Ryan’s courageous and startling stage adaptation of Eimear McBride’s award-winning novel follows the inner narrative of a girl from the womb to twenty. (Thurs 4 – Sat 6 Feb, 8pm, The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, M50 3AZ – more info)

4 – 7 Feb: Chinese New Year – Featuring thousands of lanterns, a giant golden dragon and stunning 3D light show, Chinese New Year in Manchester will celebrate the Year of the Monkey with street food and shopping, live music and lion dancers, fireworks and a Dragon Parade. (Thurs 4 – Sun 7 Feb, events across the city – more info)

5 Feb: Fizz Face Friday – With £12 bottles of Prosecco and £4 cocktails, and tunes from DJ Clint Boon, you can start the weekend in style at Black Dog NQ’s new weekly night. (Fri 5 Feb, from 5pm, Black Dog NQ, Basement Affleck’s Palace, Corner Tib Street / Church Street, M4 1PW – more info)

5 Feb: IllumiNaughty 10th Birthday Drum Dub VS. Grand Theft Audio – IllumiNaughty celebrates 10 years of love, music and madness with The Carnival of Chaos! A wintery festival in the centre of Manchester: 3 Venues, 4 Rooms, 3000 people for one final show downtown. Xolo will be hosted by Drum Dub VS Grand Theft Audio Drum & Bass. (Fri 5 Feb, 9pm – 5am, O2 Ritz, Whitworth Street West, M1 5NQ – more info)

6 Feb: Indiependence – All the best from the world of Indie and Dance to keep you dancing all night long. Tunes from Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian, Daft Punk, Courteeners, Oasis, Blur, Pulp, Prodigy and more, plus drinks promos. (Sat 6 Feb, 10.30pm – 3am, the Venue, 29 Jacksons Row, M2 5WD – more info)

6 Feb: DJ Damien Johnstone at The Pen and Pencil – Party-seekers can enjoy a mash up of disco, nu-disco and indie pop, from this Club Clique DJ.  With impressive sets under his belt including performances at Creamfields, Kendal Calling and Festival Number 6, DJ Damien Johnstone takes original tracks and turns them into glittering dancefloor hits – you’ll need your dancing shoes ready. (Sat 6 Feb, The Pen and Pencil, 57 Hilton Street, M1 2EJ – more info)

6 Feb: Xolo hosts Yo!Project’s pre-Valentine’s Day party: Russian LOVE IS… Manchester’s party crowd can expect to be immersed into an atmosphere of love, new acquaintances and dance rhythms. Russian hit DJ A-Lex is coming all the way to Manchester to bring the Russian dance scene to the city. (Sat 6 Feb, 10pm – 3am, XOLO, 11 – 13 New Wakefield Street, M1 5NP – more info)

6 Feb: NME Awards Tour 2016 – SJM Concerts Present NME Awards Tour 2016 with Austin Texas, with a line-up including Bloc Party, Drenge, Rat Boy and Bugzy Malone. (Sat 6 Feb, 7pm, The Academy Oxford Road, M13 9PR – more info)

7 Feb: Super Bowl 50 – Super Bowl fans looking to watch the action on the big screen should head to Black Dog NWS, where you can also can dig into free food at half time and enjoy special drinks deals. (Sun 7 Feb, kick off 11.30pm, Black Dog NWS, 11 – 13 New Wakefield Street, M1 5NP – more info)

8 Feb: Gladiator – A chance to see Ridley Scott’s Oscar-winning epic historical drama, starring Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix, on the big screen at The Printworks. (Mon 8 Feb, 8pm, The Printworks, 27 Withy Grove, M4 2BS – more info)

9 Feb: Pancake challenge – This Pancake Day, Black Dog NWS is dishing out free pancakes when you buy any drink at the bar, and there will be a pancake eating contest from 7pm – the winner will be awarded with a £25 bar tab and a free game of pool. They’ll also be attempting to build the tallest pancake tower in the world, and break a Guinness World Record. (Tues 9 Feb, 7pm, Black Dog NWS, 11 – 13 New Wakefield Street, M1 5NP – more info)

5 even crazier food challenges in Manchester

9 Feb: Suede – A band who’ve already cemented their place in musical history, Suede are back with a new album Night Thoughts. Catch them live at the Albert Hall. (Tues 9 Feb, 7pm, Albert Hall, 27 Peter Street, M2 5QR – more info)

9 Feb: NQ Quiz Night – Northern Quarter-goers are being with a new weekly quiz night launching tonight at The Pen and Pencil, with 4 rounds including film and TV, general knowledge, music and a special ‘wildcard’ round. It’s £1 each to take part and the winning team takes all.  The bar will also offer a round of the beers for the best team name. (Tues 9 Feb, 7.30pm, The Pen and Pencil, 57 Hilton Street, M1 2EJ – more info)

10 Feb: Bowling speed dating – Head to Dog Bowl for a Valentine’s event with a difference – daters will be given the chance to try a series of five ball games with potential partners, and if they sense enough of a spark to want to take it further Dog Bowl will offer them the chance to have dinner together that night with 50% off their food bill. (Wed 10 Feb, 7pm, Dog Bowl, Arch 57, Whitworth St West, M1 5WW – more info)

12 Feb: The Nightcreatures – Who says you need a trip to New Orleans to experience the fun of Mardi Gras? The Nightcreatures bring their R&B inspired by the hit HBO series Treme to Matt and Phreds. (Fri 12 Feb, 9.30pm – 1am, Matt and Phreds, 64 Tib Street, M4 1LW – more info)

13 Feb: Handsome Manchester – Handsome returns to Manchester to give the city’s house lovers another absolute treat. This time they’re bringing along a true giant of the Chicago house music scene – DJ and vocalist Mr. Robert Owens – for a party without prejudice. (Sat 13 Feb, 10pm – 5am, XOLO, 11 – 13 New Wakefield Street, M1 5NP – more info)

16 Feb: Kula Shaker – A chance to see English psychedelic rock band Kula Shaker live with special guests. The band will be performing their new album alongside tracks from the legendary record K, celebrating its 20th anniversary next year. (Tues 16 Feb, 7pm, O2 Ritz, Whitworth Street West, M1 5NQ – more info)

20 Feb: Duncan Wallis at The Pen and Pencil – Swapping vocals for vinyls, Duncan Wallis steps away from his usual spot in front of the mic with the Dutch Uncles and goes it alone as he takes on the decks. Expect a mix of some new wave, indie and alternative tunes that are perfect for winding up for the weekend. (Sat 20 Feb, 9.30pm – 2am, The Pen and Pencil, 57 Hilton Street, M1 2EJ – more info)

22 Feb: El Gato Negro Tapas opening – This eagerly-awaited, award-winning tapas restaurant opens on King Street on 22 Feb. You can look forward to seasonally-influenced dishes from chef patron Simon Shaw, combining modern and traditional Spanish flavours and techniques while taking inspiration from closer to home. (Open from Mon 22 Feb, 52 King Street, M2 4LY – more info)

23 Feb: Stuart Maconie: The Pie at Night – Writer and broadcaster Stuart Maconie takes you on a nocturnal trip through Britain in search of fun. With his best-selling books as a guide, Stuart plots a route that takes in high art to low culture, family holidays to fell-walking, music, sport, politics, crown green bowling and zombie apocalypses… (Tues 23 Feb, 8pm, The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, M50 3AZ – more info)

25 Feb: NT Live: As You Like It – Shakespeare’s glorious comedy of love and change comes to the National Theatre for the first time in over 30 years, with Rosalie Craig as Rosalind. Catch it broadcast live on the big screen. (Thurs 25 Feb, 7pm, AMC, The Great Northern, 235 Deansgate, M3 4EN – more info)

25 Feb: Greek wine tasting – Enjoy some Greek nibbles prepared the South American way and pair them with four different wines from two Greek producers at Fazenda: Kir Yianni & Artemis Karamolegos. (Thurs 25 Feb, 6pm, Fazenda, The Avenue, Spinningfields, M3 3AP – more info)

25 Feb – 12 Mar: Endgame – Languishing between life and death, the chair-bound tyrant Hamm (David Neilson, best known as Coronation Street’s Roy Cropper) and his dutiful but resentful companion Clov (Chris Gascoyne, Coronation Street’s Peter Barlow) are irrevocably bound to one another in this new production of Beckett’s modern classic play. (Thurs 25 Feb – Sat 12 Mar, HOME, 2 Tony Wilson Place, M15 4FN – more info)

27 Feb: Bottomless brunch – Head to The Pen and Pencil for a special bottomless brunch deal. Brunch lovers can choose from the delicious range of breakfast dishes on the menu including Eggs Florentine, American breakfasts, grilled cheese sandwiches, pancake stacks, signature burgers, corned beef hash, steak and eggs – as well as Bloody Marys and Mimosas, for £30 a head. Booking essential. (Sat 27 Feb, 10am – 2pm, The Pen and Pencil, 57 Hilton Street, M1 2EJ – more info)

27 Feb: Craig Charles Funk and Soul Club – The Craig Charles Funk & Soul Club returns with Calibro 35, an instrumental crime funk project from Italy. Plus presenter, DJ, actor and funkster Craig Charles manning the decks ’til the early hours with the planet’s funkiest tunes. (Sat 27 Feb, 9pm, Band on the Wall, 25 Swan St, M4 5JZ – more info)

27: Absolute Shite with DJ Pat Sharpe – Leave your credibility at home, come down and fill your ears with an evening of splendidly curated cack at Ruby Lounge. Expect tunes from MC Hammer, Ant & Dec, Rick Astley, Right Said Fred and more. (Sat 27 Feb, 11pm, The Ruby Lounge, 50 Newton Street, M1 2EA – more info)

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more Manchester guides.

Like this? Try these:

10 warming winter food and drink spots in Manchester
5 cool places to drink whisky in Manchester
19 ways Manchester changed the world

Main image: Tobias Alexander