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We will treat you to a high-quality mix of a spirited guest poet, a performance mixologist, a mixer act and much much more.

Join us at Contact for Cocktails and Cinquains!

What makes a good cocktail? What on earth is a cinquain? And why have we put the two together? If you join us for a new night of boisterous beverages and punchy poetry hosted by Keisha Thompson and Rory Aaron, you might just find out…

We will treat you to a high-quality mix of a spirited guest poet, a performance mixologist, a mixer act and much much more. We’ll start things simply with our guest poet’s favourite cocktail, then descent into a world of mixology mystery. Their challenge will be to create a whole new drink inspired by poetry, your reactions and whatever is available in the shops, to be honest.

For those who want to engage with the full experience, tickets will be available for you to enjoy the night as well as the feature cocktails and mocktails. Otherwise, just buy a regular ticket and sip on some water. We don’t mind. All are welcome.

Oh yes, and what is cinquain, you ask? It’s just a fancy five-line poem. Something like this: 

Join us

for a fun night

of liquid poetics

that might make you spit veneers to

shout cheers!


Performance only: £5

Performance and mocktails: £10

Performance and cocktails: £15


If you have any access needs you want to discuss with us, please call the box office Monday to Friday between 10-5pm on 0161 274 0600, alternatively you can email the box office on, or get in touch via direct message on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram (@contactmcr on all three platforms).

Mixologist Beatriz Vilela

Beatriz Vilela is an emerging mixologist from Manchester, who has been mentored by sommeliers and mixologists from Ancoats to Italy.

Her European heritage inspires an international palette in her approach to alchemy, balancing elements such as fragrance as well as flavour to enhance the experience of her cocktails.

As an artist and mixologist, no detail is left unnoticed in her process of creation to presentation.

Guest poet Toria Garbutt

Toria Garbutt is a spoken word artist from Knottingley – a former mining town in West Yorkshire. From as young as 9 she kept a diary and wrote poetry by way of navigating an alternative path through the world.

Her début album ‘Hot Plastic Moon’ is a collection of confessional, observational and character-based poetry, with a punk heritage, a staccato heartbeat and a unique flair for storytelling.

In 2017, Toria established herself as a regular support act for Dr John Cooper Clarke on his ongoing UK tour dates. Earlier this year, she launched her début poetry collection ‘The Universe and Me‘.

Person with long black hair and black top leaning on a patterned couch smiling at camera

Keisha Thompson

Keisha Thompson is a Manchester based writer, performance artist and producer. Keisha is Senior Manager of Children, Young People and Learning at Arts Council England, chair of radical arts funding body, Future’s Venture Foundation, a MOBO x London Theatre Consortium Fellow and a member of Greater Manchester Cultural and Heritage Group, and recipient of The Arts Foundation Theatre Makers Award 2021.

She is currently working with commissioners Eclipse Theatre, York Theatre Royal and Pilot Theatre to stage new play, The Bell Curves. The script was made in development with Box of Tricks.

She is also working with Fuel Theatre and Alan Lane (Slung Low) to create new children’s show, Izzy, BOSSS & Fractal.

In August 2020, she released a new mini album, Ephemera, in collaboration with Tom “Werkha” Leah and featuring riveting cellist, Abel Selaocoe.

Keisha Thompson, poet, stands against a yellow wall

Rory Aaron

Rory Aaron is a  poet, theatre-maker and creative practitioner. His first collection, ‘Doglike’, was recently published by Bearded Badger Publishers, and film with BBC New Creatives.

Through his writing, he explores themes such as mental health, class, industrialisation and the changing landscape of modern cities. He is currently ACE funded for his second collection, and completing an artistic residency with The Turnpike Centre in Leigh.

  • Price
  • Venue


  • Ages
    14+ for performance only or soft-drink buyers, 18+ for alcohol buyers
  • Running
    Approx 90 minutes
  • Genre
Date Time & Place
Friday 26 November 7:45pm
Sold out