6 Events to Kickstart Your Summer

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From a sunny weekend spent indulging in edible delights to an evening out at the theatre, we’ve got it covered with our top pick of Birmingham’s best cultural events this summer. Come rain or shine, you won’t be disappointed with what the city has to offer.

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IKON Gallery: Dan Flavin – ‘It is what it is and it ain’t nothing else’
13th April-26th June 2016
(Free)

As one of the most important post-war artists, IKON gallery brings Dan Flavin’s (1933-96) fluorescent light works to life. As an exhibition that takes its name from a statement made by Flavin himself, ‘It is what it is and nothing else’ takes the gallery’s darkest corners and illuminates them. With most pieces being dedicated to close friends, family and other influential artistic figures, Dan Flavin’s work exemplifies his interest in artworks that refer only to their factual presence, and nothing else. Viewers are encouraged to enjoy their surroundings, with no hidden meaning or ambiguity, as IKON explore the changing moods of each environment.

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Birmingham Hippodrome: Cats- The Musical
30th May- 4th June
Tickets from £20

As one of London and New York’s longest running shows, Cats has been seen by over 73 million people, enchanting audiences since it’s 1980 debut. For one week only, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s world-famous musical comes to Birmingham, direct from it’s success in London’s West End. With it’s award-winning production and renowned musical score, Cats is a theatrical all-rounder. Through magical costumes, spectacular choreography and a captivating story Cats brings a theatrical spectacle to Birmingham that simply cannot be missed.

To book tickets click here

Ice Cave

Centenary Square: Ice Cave
20th-29th May
(Free daily until 10pm)

Coors Light bring their pop-up ice cave to Birmingham for the ‘Rave in a Cave’, a place to kick back and enjoy an ice cold beer or a tipple from their cocktail range. Visitors are invited to keep warm in a thermal cape, whilst enjoying the music from live DJ’s as a collaboration with Mixmag. Whether you’re looking for a cool alternative to after-work drinks, or you simply want to dance the night away, the Ice Cave brings a new and exciting experience as the first of its kind in Birmingham.

To pre-book tickets click here

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The Bond: English Wine Takeover Festival
Saturday 21st May 2016
Tickets from £13.50

In the build up to English Wine Week, this day-long festival brings English wine producers together to showcase and celebrate the delicious wines the country has to offer. As a perfect addition to the weekend, the English Wine Takeover Festival allows visitors to taste a selection of around 60 delectable wines. As if this wasn’t enough, why not opt for the upgraded VIP ticket option, and enjoy a ‘Quintessentially British Bubbly Brunch’ by the canal between 11am – 12pm. Peel & Stone street food will be around to keep hunger at bay, alongside a range of exciting wine masterclasses; an experience not to be missed!

To book tickets click here

SAMPLED at Birmingham Hippodrome IDFB 2016 -dancer Vidya Patel - photo by Simon Richardson

International Dance Festival
1st – 22nd May 2016
(Free events and ticket options available)

As one of the largest festivals in the world, the International Dance Festival Birmingham (IDFB) presents a world-class programme of performance across ta range of the city’s venues. In partnership with Birmingham Hippodrome and produced by Dance Xchange, IDFB is a highlight of the city’s cultural calendar, combining an impressive range of dance styles with various theatres and public spaces across the city. From intimate to large scale, each performance puts a unique stamp on the festival. Whether you’re simply passing by whilst shopping in the city, or taking time out to enjoy a more conventional theatrical experience, IDFB creates a buzz of diversity across Birmingham.

To book tickets click here

Foodie Fest

Cannon Hill Park: Foodies Festival
3rd-5th June
Tickets from £10

The Foodies Festival hits Cannon Hill park for a weekend of edible enjoyment. From street food to strawberries and cream, the Foodies Festival has it covered. Whether you want to enjoy a cocktail from the Pimm’s teapot, or see Nadia Hussain (The Great British Bake Off 2015 Winner) in action at the ‘Cake and Bake’ theatre, this fun and friendly festival welcomes everybody. After a day of feasting and fun, relax in the Deco Noir VIP Lounge with private Mirror Bar and refreshments, and soak in the atmosphere with live music. If you are still hungry, there’s always the Chilli-Eating competition to take part in!

To buy tickets click here