Manchester Theatre Awards

> Independent informed reviews by the region’s most experienced critics

What's on

Ring Cycle for Lowry next year

Opera North’s highly-anticipated full performances of The Ring Cycle: Richard Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen will come to Salford’s Lowry arts centre from June 13-18 next year

Jane heads east to Manchester

Ayub Khan Din’s critically-acclaimed play East is East comes to Manchester Opera House next week following its run in the West End

Family fun at Z-arts

A season of family entertainment and activities is in store at Manchester Z-arts centre in the opening months of 2015, including a lost, storytelling penguin and a FREE day out with a difference

Top Hat return to region

Triple Olivier Award-winning musical Top Hat - featuring the classic songs of Irving Berlin and based on the much-loved film starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers – returns to the region in February

A created for MIF

Commissioned by Manchester International Festival, National Theatre and the Théâtre du Châtelet wonder

YEN for a world premiere

Anna Jordan’s Bruntwood Prize winning play YEN is to receive its world premiere in The Studio at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre from February 18 to March 7

A Lovely War for Opera House

Former Coronation Street stars Wendi Peters and Ian Reddington lead the cast of the classic satirical musical set during the First World War - Oh What a Lovely War at Manchester Opera House in February

A home run for the Octagon

After its current run of Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge Bolton’s Octagon moves closer to home, from February 19 to March 21, with Hindle Wakes written by Stanley Houghton and directed by David Thacker

Production certain to bomb

A decade spanning, post-apocalyptic epic - A-Bomb on Broadway - is a new piece of theatre charting the memories and dreams of individuals

Return of the Shrek

No sooner has Shrek the Musical finished its run at Manchester’s Palace Theatre than Salford’s Lowry arts centre announce it is at their venue in February next year

First HOME run announced

HOME, Manchester’s soon-to-open international centre for contemporary visual arts, theatre and film, has announced the full programme of its opening season

Kids' drama takes a dive

A state-of-the-art submarine arrives at the Manchester’s z-Arts venue for Emergency Story Penguin (February 18-22), a mix of puppetry, video and music by the acclaimed Dep Arts and Slung Low theatre company

Lion King prowls again

The Lion King roars back into Manchester, doubtless to repeat its earlier record-breaking run at the city’s Palace Theatre

Thacker offers a new View

To mark the centenary of the playwright’s birth, the Octagon Theatre in Bolton is staging Arthur Miller’s celebrated story of loyalty, community, and possessive love – A View from the Bridge

Reduced to laughter

Following a critically acclaimed season at Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014 the Reduced Shakespeare Company are out to reduce the UK to tears of laughter again

Exchange of views for theatre

Manchester’s Royal Exchange has made it a new year resolution to involve audiences in the development of new shows

Christmas musical for Manchester

Alexandra Burke will reprise her West End starring role when the hit musical The Bodyguard comes to the Palace Theatre Manchester next December

HOME fundraising at the double

HOME in Manchester has announced two new fundraising schemes – HOME Founding Patrons and HOME Opening Sponsors – that together launch the fundraising campaign for the international centre for contemporary visual art theatre and film

Rikki picks up fellowship post

Emerging theatre director Rikki Henry will be joining Manchester’s HOME venue in 2015 on the BBC Performing Arts Fund Fellowship programme

Suite stuff for the Contact

The Spalding Suite is a new physical theatre show inspired by the UK's basketball culture and featuring live Beatboxing and Hip Hop

Double opera bill for Manchester

Iconic operas Rigoletto and Madama Butterfly will come to the Opera House Manchester in March 2015 as part of a national tour of Britain and Ireland


Latest reviews

Jane Horrocks heads the cast of East is East
Will Travis and Susan Mcardle
Brianne Edge The Showstoppers
Wayne McGregor Random Dance Natasha Davidson as Catherine, and Colin Connor as Eddie Carbone
Ian Tilton Noodles, the company
Sean Purser One Man, Two Guvnors
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
We're Going On A Bear Hunt at The Lowry
Robert Workman Poster for Peter Pan Goes Wrong

East is East

Ayub Khan Din
Trafalgar Transformed at Opera House, Manchester
(reviewer: David Upton)

Blind Date

Dave Simpson
Biteback Productions at Joshua Brooks
(reviewer: Kevin Bourke)


Wayne McGregor
Random Dance at The Lowry
(reviewer: Robert Beale)


Nofitstate at The Lowry
(reviewer: Alan Hulme)

One Man, Two Guvnors

Richard Bean after Carlo Goldoni
The National Theatre at The Lowry, Salford
(reviewer: David Cunningham)

We're Going On A Bear Hunt

Adapted for the stage from Michael Rosen's book
KW & NB Ltd at The Lowry, Salford
(reviewer: Carmel Thomason)

Peter Pan Goes Wrong

Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields
Kenny Wax and Stage Presence at The Lowry,Salford
(reviewer: David Cunningham)

Youth panel reviews


Devised by Contact Young Actors Company and Aqueous Humour
Contact Young Actors Company at Contact Theatre
(reviewer: Lizz Clark)

The Last Word

Christina Maiden
Oldham Coliseum Theatre Learning and Engagement at Oldham Coliseum
(reviewer: Lizz Clark)


Francesca Waite
The Lowry Young Actors Company at The Lowry
(reviewer: Georgina Wells)

The Wardrobe

Sam Holcroft
Lowry Young Actors Company at The Lowry
(reviewer: Evie Tucker)

A Letter to Lacey

Catherine Johnson
Lowry Young Actors Company at The Lowry
(reviewer: Evie Tucker)

Latest articles

Fringe On Film

Some of the best of this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe is coming to a cinema near you.

Kevin Bourke

Whispers Of War

Manchester independent theatre icons Feelgood Theatre Company and 24:7 Festival join forces

Kevin Bourke


Clonter Farm, deep in the heart of the Cheshire countryside, is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a special production of Gounod's Faust. Following a successful run in July, there will be one more performance at Clonter on 27 September before it transfers to London.

Philip Radcliffe

HOMEward bound

Theatre Director Walter Meirjohann reveals some of his exciting and ambitious plans for HOME.

Kevin Bourke

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