Culture and entertainment
Whether you want to play, watch, listen or perform, there are lots of ways to enjoy culture on campus.
Through one of our Students' Union supported societies, you could spark a lifelong passion or have a once in a lifetime experience. This could include performing in an opera, getting cast in one of our drama productions or taking a comedy sketch to the Edinburgh Fringe.
We also have regular live music and occasional club nights on campus including:
- Jazz and folk nights at Vanbrugh College. It's also a venue for music lessons and workshops.
- A varied programme of concerts from folk to classical in the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall.
- The Courtyard and The Glasshouse host our campus club nights. Timewarp at The Courtyard travels back from today's chart toppers through the '00s to the classics of the '90s and '80s, while Marmite at The Glasshouse is a shameless cheesy pop night. The Courtyard also hosts regular fun karaoke nights.
Fun fact: Jimi Hendrix played a gig on campus in 1967! We've named Hendrix Hall after him. If you come to an Open Day you might find yourself attending a talk in there.
- Perform medieval re-enactments with the Re-Enactment Society, with a current focus on the Viking and Saxon eras.
- If dancing is your thing, there is a wide variety to choose from such the Dance Society and the Swing Dance Society. You could also explore some Gaana dance moves with the Tamil & Mallu Society.
- If you'd prefer to be a spectator you could join the Theatre-Goers Society to see plays, cinema screenings and musicals across the city and beyond.
Fun fact: Comedian Harry Enfield is a York graduate!
Express yourself or simply be inspired by the art on offer around campus:
- The Norman Rea Art Gallery in Derwent College is run entirely by students. They showcase the art work of students and professional artists in exhibitions throughout the year.
- The Art Society runs life drawing classes, workshops, exhibitions and trips to art galleries. They also run Wentworth Studios, a creative space for painting, printmaking and ceramics.
- Our annual Langwith Scott Awards celebrate the art of students, staff and members of the public with the likes of weekly art workshops and open mic nights.
- The Creative Writing Society (also known as York Inklings) provide opportunities to write and share ideas.
- You can also share your love of poetry with Slam Soc.
Fun fact: The sculpture behind James College is made from bits of the last steam locomotive built in York.
York Student Cinema is a student-run cinema on campus that is open to everyone.
They usually show films around three times a week during each semester. It's the cheapest cinema in York at just £4 per ticket (or £3 if you become a member!), or you could get an annual pass for £30.
Ideas and inspiration
Our campus is a hub for sharing knowledge, inspiring collaboration and enriching lives.
York Festival of Ideas
Our annual Festival of Ideas features world-class events on campus and across the city, for all ages and interests.
From climate change to robotics, YorkTalks is a day of inspirational short talks about the world-leading research happening at York.
Expand your subject knowledge, enhance your employment prospects and take part in fun activities with fellow students.