The 25th logo to celebrate Attenborough Arts Centre Anniversary
Richard Attenborough kneeling on the ground surrounded by people raising money to support the building of the Attenborough Arts Centre building with two guide dogs in the foreground, 1991
Launching the appeal for Disability Centre, 1991, University of Leicester, Special Collections Archive

Celebrating 25 Years of Creativity

27 May 1997 – 27 May 2022
For 25 years, Attenborough Arts Centre has been breaking down barriers to the arts. Attenborough Arts Centre was established by Richard Attenborough, a lifelong champion of arts and social justice who campaigned to make culture accessible to everyone. He opened our building together with Diana, Princess of Wales, on 27 May 1997. A quarter-of-a-century on, we continue Lord Attenborough’s mission, recognising the many prevailing systemic inequalities which prevent access to culture for so many people and striving to open opportunities for creativity to the most underrepresented people in society. Join us in celebrating our 25th anniversary as we reflect on our many successes and achievements over the years, while looking ahead to a bright future guided by Lord Attenborough’s founding vision.

Upcoming Events

The poster advertising Gallery Lates: DREAM, with a dark background and rainbow glowing archway in the centre.

Gallery Lates: Dream

Join us after hours for a free immersive live art experience, presenting the best in local music, dance and visual art in our gallery and cafe. Inspired by our current exhibition ‘Playing in Wonderland’ by Mohammad Barrangi, the theme for this edition is ‘Dream’ as we take you into a bright and colourful wonderland of endless possibilities.

Free for all, with food and drink available catered by Vegan Pantry serving up samosas, onion bhajis and more.

3 March 2023, 8pm – 11pm

Past Events

Leicester Comedy Festival Logo.

Leicester Comedy Festival 2023

Leicester Comedy Festival is back for its 30th year bringing you the most celebrated comedy in Britain. This year we are taking part by hosting 23 must-see performances, with all the basis covered from hilarious shows, family entertainment and important discussions of the comedy sector today.

Explore below to see all our our shows and book your place before they sell out soon!

9 February – 26 February 2023

Spark Festival 2023 logo with Keith Harring inspired illustrations dancing with rainbows and flowers and wateringcans on a red and yellow background.

Spark Festival 2023

There is something extraordinary happening for everyone aged 0-13 and their family! We are thrilled to again be part of the fantastic Spark Festival as they celebrate their 20th year. Explore our incredible shows below.

13 February – 19 February 2023

Stories Of The Mind: An Exhibition by Next Gen. Creatives

Attenborough Arts Centre’s Next Gen. Creatives., a group of young people ages 16-25 who help shape the venue’s programme, will present an exhibition in response to Mohammad Barrangi’s ‘Playing in Wonderland’ exhibition. Entitled Stories of the Mind, their exhibition draws inspiration from Mohammad Barrangi’s work and use of mythology as a tool to express complex feelings, ideas, opinions and memories. This exhibition will also feature work from children and young people from the Inclusive Youth Arts Programme, Leicester College students and local primary school children.

20 January – 1 February 2023, Gallery 2

Roti Moon poster, showing a glowing roti moon on a purple background with a girl below holding up a roti.

Fishhouse Theatre and Upstairs at the Western presents Roti Moon

Diya thinks her roti is yuck! She’d rather eat pizza!
Her grandad, Dada, tells her that his mother’s, mother’s, mother flipped her roti too high and it landed in the sky. That the moon is a roti! She’s heard that story a million times.
Diya still doesn’t believe him but this time she sets out to find out more about the moon. She meets some charming new animal friends on the way and learns a lot about tolerating other people’s thoughts.
The show is interactive with lots of sounds and actions and before it begins, the children are given an introduction to the theatre including a physical and vocal warm up!
Monday 19 – Thursday 22 December 2022

Check In Festival 2022
In Good Company’s annual festival with Attenborough Arts Centre was back!

Check-In returned in-person, 18 – 19 November 2022, and it was one not to be missed. The lineup included shows, workshops, networking events and a Scratch Night, which made it perfect for people who were new to performance or those who had been in the sector for years. It was incredible to have people join in, meeting new people, and learning something new.

Friday 18 – Saturday 19 November 2022

A poster design showing work from Letty McHugh's 'Anchoarge' and Mohammad Barrangi's 'Playing in Wonderland'.
‘Anchorage’ and ‘Playing in Wonderland’ Exhibition Launch
With the arrival of autumn, we were proud to be exhibiting Mohammad Barrangi’s ‘Playing in Wonderland’ and Letty McHugh’s ‘Anchorage’. All walks of people joined us for the launch, to experience the work for the first time.

At the launch, people explored Mohammad’s imaginative world of fantastical characters and colourful scenery. They were immersed in the vibrant yellows, reds and greens spilling into the space with geometric shapes climbing the walls and colours flowing onto the floor, gather around unique sculptures of mythical animals, creatures and characters which emerge from walls, plinths and other spaces.

Letty McHugh’s exhibition in Gallery 2, ‘Anchorage’, sought to challenge ideas around sculpture, space and our relationship to each other. The centrepiece of the exhibition was a 4.5 x 3 metre textile installation referring to anchorages: spaces created during the medieval period for people who chose to isolate from secular society, which provided opportunity for connection with others with similar values.

Friday 28 October 2022, 5pm – 7pm

Gallery Lates: Pose
Join us after hours for a free immersive live art experience, presenting the best in local music, dance and visual art in our gallery and cafe. Inspired by our current exhibition ‘Black Garden Paintings’ by Bruce Mclean, the theme for this edition is ‘Pose‘. Free for all, with food and drink available. Come dressed to impress and expect an ambient atmosphere with exploratory good vibes to start your weekend off in style.

Friday 30 September 2022, 7pm – 11pm

Hands turning clay on a wheel.
Creative Tutors Month
Our creative tutors have been an intergral part to Attenborough Arts Centre even before we had a building to call our own. This August, we want to celebrate their contributions to not only the arts but our communities. These range from long-standing tutors that have been here since the beginning, to new tutors who we are so excited to support in the coming months. Keep an eye on our social channels and for a new webpage coming soon.

All of August 2022

Family Rave Festival
The Family Rave Crew are taking over the entire centre to bring you a family fun filled day of festival frolics and fabulousness!

All the joys of a festival without the wellies & soggy tent. Come dressed in full colour, shiny sequins and your best festival outfits. There will be 2 Family Rave sessions, live music, street style performance, loads of drop in art and craft activities, forest school activities, dance and yoga workshops, face painting and eco glitter station.

Sunday 31 July 2022, 10am – 5pm

Michael Attenborough cutting cake with University of Leicester and Attenborough Arts Centre
An Evening with Michael Attenborough CBE
We spent an evening with Michael Attenborough, who helped us mark our 25th anniversary with a special event highlighting Attenborough Arts Centre’s history and the Attenborough family’s long standing connection with the University.

Thursday 9 June 2022, 6pm – 9pm

Read more about the event by clicking the link below.

Explore our history through our archival videos below