From Mozart to Metallica: Lancaster’s a campus full of culture


Pendle Live Music Thursdays

Campus bands make Thursday nights at Pendle a must

If live music is your thing then Pendle Bar is the absolute place to be on Thursday nights. With a healthy mixture of both student and professional bands, Pendle Live has swiftly evolved from a low-key forum for student bands to perform their sets into a regular staple of the Lancaster student’s weekly social calendar. “We’ve had some really great campus bands” says Pendle President Andy Barnett “which vary from quirky cover bands like The Hydes, to original music such as Lancaster veterans Boo Boo Kiddy Fonc.” On top of this, Pendle plays host to some great acts on the national scene, such as Dan Cropper, Morain, The Rileys and many more.

But Pendle Live isn’t just a great place to come and see live music, it’s also a great place for up and coming campus bands to perform their stuff and get promoted. Aside from the event’s myspace, where students can hear previous acts, there is also Pendle Live: The Album, which features tracks from artists that have played at previous Pendle Live events, giving budding musicians a great forum to get their stuff heard and students a compilation of original music for cheap.

Everyone loves music and everyone especially loves seeing it played live. Pendle Live provides top-notch quality entertainment in the form of some of the North West’s finest musical talent in a humble, welcoming environment right on your doorstep. Though a relatively new addition to the Lancaster cultural landscape, it has nonetheless provided some of the best entertainment Lancaster University has ever seen. It’s on every Thursday in Pendle Bar and what’s more – it’s free! By now you should have realised that you have no excuse not to check it out, so get yourself down there and remember to bring your lighters, just in case a ballad breaks out.


An alternative for those who don’t quite fancy Gaga and her meat

Short for Rock Society – Lancaster’s RocSoc caters to those people who like their music loud, heavy and fast (or slow if groove metal is your thing). If you’re bored of the average club night with its endless repeats of Lady GaGa tracks and flash-in-the-pan indie pop and want something with a bit more grit, then RocSoc’s got your back. “We run weekly socials on Monday nights (9-12pm) upstairs at the Yorkshire House pub, in Lancaster town centre, where our DJs play a good selection of classic rock, heavy metal, industrial, punk, goth, etc. plus a huge amount of requests.” says Roc Soc President Emma Newbrook.

As well as this, RocSoc organises out of town events each term such as Liverpool’s ‘Krazy House’ and Sheffield’s ‘Corporation’ rock nights as well as numerous trips to PR1 in Preston. They’re also no strangers to live music, with several events being put on in the past comprised of live rock and heavy metal from local up and comers.

Membership is only £5 and with that comes discounted entry to all RocSoc events, as well as a free shot at Hustle during Monday’s RocSoc socials. In other words – the membership fee pays for itself (if you have enough shots, that is). If you’re passionate about rock and heavy metal music of any sort then you should seriously consider joining. The Monday nights out are a great way to combine meeting new people with head-banging to decent music that other places might not be willing to play. If you’re only chance at hair-flailing on a night out is the rare occasions that mainstream clubs decide to play ‘Enter Sandman’ and you’re aching for more then you should drop by RocSoc during Fresher’s Fair or attend one of their many socials throughout the year.


Broadcasting live from campus into an eardrum near you

BailriggFM is the student radio station of Lancaster University and is one of the oldest and longest-running student radio stations in the country. Run by students and for students, BailriggFM provides news and entertainment across the University campus 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The station features a very active news team if you’re an aspiring journalist, with all sorts of shows dealing with current events both on campus and in the national and international press dealing with straight-up reporting or opinion based light-hearted discussions shows. Furthermore, the station’s annual Roses coverage and the Sabbatical elections coverage draws significant interest from students all across the campus and is one of the main events the station puts on.

But it wouldn’t be a radio station without a good helping of music shows and BailriggFM certainly has its fair share of those. Students are free to decide to play any music they wish to (within reason), so if you’ve been aching to impose your obscure music taste on the student population (that Korean jazz-fusion won’t play itself, after all) then there are plenty of opportunities to create your own show adhering to your rules. Previous success stories include nights dedicated to The Beatles and 1960s psychedelia as well as many popular indie shows.

Presenting isn’t for everyone, though, and some people just want to get involved behind the scenes. As BailriggFM is operated and managed entirely by students, with a fully elected management committee, every member is given the chance to help out in running the station. Membership is part of the joint student media membership and is only £3 per person and is open to any and all students. Students interested in getting involved can head down to the station HQ in Furness and sign up, or drop by during Fresher’s Fair.

University of Lancaster Music Society

Symphonies, choirs and swing make for tremendous concerts

The University of Lancaster Music Society (ULMS for short) is one of the largest and most successful societies on campus, with over 200 members. It is the society responsible for the running of Lancaster University’s six main musical ensembles: swing group, big band, symphony orchestra, choir, wind band and brass band. Incorporating all of these groups, it puts on a large amount of concerts each year with tremendous success, with tunes incorporating a diverse selection for traditional music lovers.

If you’d rather perform the music than watch it be performed, then ULMS six ensembles are always looking for more musicians, but you’ll need to be a member first. Luckily, membership is only £1 a year and with that comes at least one ULMS letter per term detailing the societies’ activities as well as the opportunity to perform in or conduct ensembles and take advantage of reduced concert prices throughout the year. ULMS is open to all students and not just those studying music.

ULMS concerts are very popular and in high demand, with Choir recently giving a chartiy concert at Lancaster Priory and Big Band putting on performances at Grizedale JCR, Roses Weekend and Bowland Extrav. Furthermore, all ensembles and small groups come together in Summer term for the Last Night of the Proms concert, a highlight of the ULMS year and certainly not something to be missed. Students interested should head down the ULMS stand at Fresher’s Fair or head along to one of the rehearsals throughout the year.

LU Cinema

From summer blockbusters to indie, you’ll find it here

Currently celebrating its 45th year, the LU Cinema is perhaps the most widely attended and easily accessible staple of the Lancaster University cultural life, which is what you would expect as one of the best-equipped student cinemas in the country, using equipment one would expect to find in any public cinema. Advertisements for films can be seen dotted all around campus, with timetables for the term’s showings placed in several key areas.

This term LU Cinema is proud to boast performances of the top two must-sees of the summer: Inception and Toy Story 3 as well as the love-it-or-hate-it Twilight: Eclipse and the hypercharged Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. This might lead one to think that LU Cinema is merely a cheaper way to see blockbuster films after they’ve had their run and at a heavily discounted price, but you would of course be wrong. “We show a mix of modern blockbusters” says LU Cinema President Mark Harper “but we have also shown classic, foreign and smaller indie films and this term is no exception to that.”

But perhaps the biggest event of the term for film fans is the Halloween All-Nighter, the 12-hour horror film endurance run going from 9pm to 9am on Saturday 30th October to Sunday 31st October. Films this year include the critically acclaimed sci-fi horror Splice as well as the modern classic Saw. Tickets go on sale from week one and will be £6 with a purple card and £8 without. Alternatively you can pay on the door at £8 with a purple card and £10 without.

LU Cinema is located in Bowland Lecture Theatre with showtime at 7:30pm and doors opening 15 minutes prior to showtime.

Live at LICA

North campus’ hub of art, dance and avant-garde

Situated at the north end of campus Live at LICA (Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts) is the combined organisation for the three venues within the Great Hall complex: The Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster International Concert Series and the Peter Scott Gallery. The Nuffield Theatre deals in contemporary dance, theatre and live art. The Lancaster International Concert Series, meanwhile, is the main provider of classical music (incorporating jazz, chamber music, etc.) in North Lancashire and Cumbria. Finally, the Peter Scott Gallery presents a rich and varied programme of temporary exhibitions and houses the University’s Art Collection.

For first term back Live at LICA really has an exceptional array of talent on display for art lovers of any sort. The Autumn season kicks off with a UK Premier from avant-garde theatre pioneers Forced Entertainment, who will be performing their extraordinary new show The Thrill of it All on 12th and 13th October at 8pm in Nuffield Theatre. There will also be an exhibition launched in the Peter Scott Gallery on 12th October at 6pm showcasing captivating film-based works from Ellie Rees and Hetain Patel. Furthermore, UK poet laureate Carol Anne Duffy will be doing a reading to kick off the Lancaster Literature Festival at 7:30pm on October 15th in the Great Hall.

Live at LICA look set to have some really stellar events on throughout the year and event listings can be viewed at, where tickets can also be booked. LICA has also teamed up with the Dukes Theatre in town to offer students under 26 free dance and theatre tickets and a Dukes and Nuffield discount card. To sign up call the Live at LICA box office on 01524 594151 or the Dukes Theatre on 01524 598500.


Get yourself on screen or just sit back and tune in

If you have an active passion for all things televisual and would like to get involved in something like that yourself, then LUTube is the place to be. Founded only two years ago, LUTube has quickly grown into an essential part of the student media alliance and has recently begun broadcasting UNIversal – Lancaster’s very own student-themed serial drama as well as Sh** Got Real, a light-hearted current affairs show, both of which have been tremendously popular with students.

LUTube also provides important and ambitious live outside broadcasts including coverage of the LUSU sabbatical elections and the annual inter-University sporting contest Roses. In 2010 LUTube was able to offer four live locations and a live studio from which to provide the much-watched coverage. Last year the LUTube sports coverage was something of an essential campus event and looks set to be the same this year.

If you fancy doing a production of your own, then LUTube offers its members access to specialist production and broadcasting equipment, including a three-camera TV studio as well as professional editing software and 42 inch LCD screens for playback. If that sounds intimidating or you’re not technically minded, then don’t worry! Training for all the equipment is included with the £3 membership fee.

It’s still in its infancy, which means that ideas for projects are always flooding in and are always welcome. If the success of the past two years is anything to go by, then next year looks set to provide Lancaster with some excellent news and entertainment. People interested in signing up can do so at Fresher’s Fair or attend one of the regular meetings throughout the year.

Lancaster University Theatre Group

All the world’s a stage, particularly in Lancaster

Theatre Group gives its members an exciting and engaging experience of the theatre ranging from all aspects of the profession including acting, directing, producing, stage-managing and other behind the scenes and technical roles. They also put on a wide variety of shows each year, with previous performances including a stage adaptation of A Clockwork Orange and Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere.

The society also takes its work further afield, having performed plays at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival including Much Ado About Nothing in 2009. Theatre Group was also closely associated with The Offshoots theatre company production of Dr Faustus in Edinburgh this year, which received glowing reviews, being hailed as “sublime” by The Stage newspaper. They are an ambitious society and are hoping to enter this year’s adaptation of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest into the National Student Drama Festival. Other plays to get involved with this term are Daughters of Heaven and an adaptation of the Discworld novel Guards! Guards!

There will be auditions for Theatre Group held on the 9th and 10th October meeting at 12pm in Furness College Foyer. There will furthermore be a technie meeting on the 14th October for anyone who wants to get involved behind the scenes. More info can be found on the Theatre Group website at or by coming along at Fresher’s Fair and having a chat.

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