Follow Spot #1

Follow Spot #1

Manchester theatre tittle tattle... Gee, Officer Krupke, if you're thinking of waiting to read the reviews before buying a ticket for West Side Story at the Royal Exchange, you might want to prepare yourself for a bit of scramble to get tickets. A lot of performances are already completely sold out, and those that aren't [...]

From Shore to Shore

From Shore to Shore

Yang Sing Restaurant, Manchester. 14 March 2019. Ant and Dec, Yorkshire pudding and Postman Pat? When Yi Di, a young Chinese woman, newly arrived in England, encounters any local references with which she is unfamiliar she scribbles them down in a note-book, to be looked up later. Mei Lan can remember how she and her [...]

The Stretch

The Stretch

53two, Manchester. 7 March 2019. Originally a well-received fifteen minute play performed at 53two last year as part of JB Shorts, The Stretch has now been developed by director Simon Naylor and writer Joe Ainsworth into a fully formed production. A grim and gritty exploration of ten years in prison, Ainsworth's script is quick to [...]

Bottleneck

Bottleneck

Oldham Coliseum. 6 March 2019. Greg is a football mad fourteen years old. "Red through and through", his bedroom wall is covered with Liverpool memorabilia. It's 1989, and Kenny Dalglish jostles for space on that wall with footballers John Barnes and Jim Beglin. When Greg's not thinking about his beloved team, he's moaning about his [...]

Forest

Forest

HOME, Manchester. 23 & 25 January 2019. The theatre seating is out-of-bounds. Heads of broccoli have been placed at intervals on the floor around the space. Their varying shades of green and yellow stand out within the black box surroundings. The audience gathers among the cruciferous forms. We are on our feet. In the centre [...]

8055 & The House

8055 & The House

53two, Manchester. 6 February 2019. Formed from a group of Royal Exchange Young Company alumni, Manchester-based Switch's aim is to "provide young artists with a platform to showcase their talents, working together to create exciting theatre". Currently resident at 53two, Switch's first full production is a double bill of new plays, both written by company [...]

Plant Fetish

Plant Fetish

HOME, Manchester. 26 January 2019. Ensconced upon a big red sofa, surrounded by a 'hareem' of houseplants, Chanje Kunda sips white wine and traces the rocky emotional path that led her to a very personal botanical epiphany. Efforts to channel the positive force of affirmations, yogis and good omens have failed to save Kunda from [...]