Mother Courage and Her Children

Mother Courage and Her Children

Royal Exchange, Manchester. 13 February 2019. It's 2080. Europe is no longer a collection of nations, it has become The Grid. The Reds and the Blues are at war, fighting for possession of each individual grid square of land. Self-styled "entrepreneur" Mother Courage follows the conflict in search of profit. Her daughter and two sons [...]

The Producers

The Producers

Royal Exchange, Manchester. 5 December 2018 & 3 January 2019. After the success of Sweeney Todd, Sweet Charity and Guys and Dolls it's no surprise to see the Royal Exchange programming in another crowd-pleasing musical as their Christmas and New Year show. Mel Brooks’ The Producers, however, might not seem the most obvious choice for [...]

Manchester Theatre 2019 – the increasing influence of young companies

Manchester Theatre 2019 – the increasing influence of young companies

When Leeds Playhouse announced the formation of its first young company in April last year it was a bit of a wake up call for me. The Playhouse were looking to support a group of young people to collaborate in "making and producing bold and socially resonant work", as well providing opportunities for them to [...]

Manchester Theatre – Best of 2018

Manchester Theatre – Best of 2018

This year I ended up seeing lots of great theatre in Manchester as well as in Leeds, Liverpool, London, Sheffield and, for the first time, Huddersfield. The following are my favourite Manchester shows of 2018. In compiling the list I've restricted my choices to productions that were either premiered in Greater Manchester or could only [...]

Death Of A Salesman

Death Of A Salesman

Royal Exchange, Manchester. 16 October 2018. A travelling salesman no longer fit to travel. A home filled with consumer goods that break down before they are even paid for. A once green and leafy neighbourhood concreted over and crammed with new apartment blocks. Willy Loman's world has become one of increasing disappointment and insecurity, yet [...]

CO:LAB Festival 2018

CO:LAB Festival 2018

Royal Exchange, Manchester. 20 - 22 July 2018. CO:LAB is the Royal Exchange's annual festival showcasing works-in-progress by "the next generation of North West theatre-makers". The weekend-long event is part of the theatre's Open Exchange talent development programme and it provides local artists with an opportunity to test out their work in front of a [...]