A cultural guide to... Leicester
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Leicester, with a population of 342,000, is arguably one of the most diverse and multicultural cities in the UK. It’s been all over the news in recent years with the discovery on Richard III’s remains under a car park, and one of the biggest underdog stories in the history of sport - Leicester FC winning the Premier League in 2016! As well as an incredibly interesting history and sporting culture, Leicester has a lot to offer in terms of arts. Not only is theatre, film, and music celebrated, but there are several religious and multicultural events which bring the whole city together every year. It would be impossible to list all of Leicester's incredible events and exciting venues, but here are a few of the best. THEATRE THE Y The Y is a much smaller venue than the Curve, however as DMU student Kelly-Mae Matt, who works part-time at the theatre, said: "The Y Theatre hosts a lot more variety and has a much friendlier feel to it. The building is old, so it has its history." She cites it as a place that creates community, something which Leicester prides itself on. The theatre has hosted several acts such as Jonathon Pie, Reginald D. Hunter, and Josie Long. It’s also renowned for its show ‘14/48’, The World’s Quickest Theatre Festival. During the festival, 14 plays are written, rehearsed, designed, scored, and performed within 48 hours with seven different plays being performed each night. Leicester also hosts a Comedy Festival each year with many of the performances being held at The Y. http://www.leicesterymca.co.uk/theatre/ ATTENBROUGH ARTS CENTRE The Attenbrough Arts Centre could have been listed under any one of these categories, as it is a cultural hub of Leicester. It has a gallery, hosts live music, spoken word and dance performances , and has theatre and comedy shows. You name it, they’ve got it. Events this summer include: Sunday 9th July, 1-4pm: Contact Improvisation Jam, which involves dancing and contact improvisational skills development. Sunday 9th July: 5-6pm She’s 12. This event features Nadine Knew, who explores what it’s like to be a 12-year-old in today’s society. Both events are pay what you feel, in order to open up these opportunities to everyone. http://www2.le.ac.uk/hosted/attenborougharts/ FILM PHOENIX The Phoenix is an independent cinema also situated in the cultural quarter near the Curve. It plays a variety of low budget, independent films, and tickets are much cheaper than the Showcase Cinema at £5 a ticket for students. The cinema also has a café with several veggie and vegan options, which also offers student discount. In addition to a regular film schedule, the cinema hosts events such as a yearly film festival organised by students, the most recent being Sentient Film Festival which ran for a week in March featuring classic films such as Metropolis and 2001: A Space Odyssey. Ben Wheatley also hosted a preview screening of his film Free Fire with a live Q&A. http://www.phoenix.org.uk/
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