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What’s On: Manchester’s Theatre in 2020

Carlie George Hedmann

The magic of theatre never fails to disappoint; this year Manchester’s finest talents have had us on the edge of our seats, exploring invisible cities and singing along to Sondheim! As we ring in the new decade, it promises to be another year jam-packed of unmissable shows. Without further ado, here is our 2020 theatre round up. 

Image credit: We Will Rock You via Facebook
Brush the dust off of your air guitar and get ready to stomp, clap and sing all night long, as We Will Rock You arrives in January. Featuring many of Queen's biggest hits including We Are the Champions, Bohemian Rhapsody and of course, We Will Rock You, join Scaramouche and Galileo as they take on the infamous Killer Queen for the right to Rock and Roll! In February, Cruising Through Menopause docks at The Palace. Starring Cheryl Ferguson (Eastenders), Nicole Barber-Lane (Hollyoaks), Rebecca Wheatley (Casualty) and Nicki French (Eurovision), come aboard for a raucous but heartfelt tale of self-discovery, love and friendship. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the Irish phenomenon Riverdance returns to Manchester in March. Dazzling critics and audiences alike for over a quarter of a century, this spectacular show has to be seen to be believed and is a family night out like no other.  

Image credit: HOMEmcr via Facebook
HOME’s 2020 season kicks off with The Strange Tale of Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel. Featuring an original piano score by Mercury Award Nominee Zoe Rahman, this production pays homage to two British comedic powerhouses, who changed the face of comedy forever. This is followed by Ad Infinitum’s Extraordinary Wall of Silence. Based upon real life interviews from Deaf people living in the UK, they tell these stories through a combination of spoken word, physical language and British Sign Language. In March, Poet in Da Corner transfers from The Royal Court. Inspired by Dizzee Rascal’s groundbreaking album, in this raw, semi-autobiographical piece watch as Debris Stevenson discovers her teenage self through the power of Grime. 

Image credit: The Lowry via Facebook
The Lowry begins 2020 with Shakespeare's Hamlet. Chalice Productions put a modern spin on this tragic tale of love, lust and betrayal through the tragedy of Hamlet, her allies and her enemies. Before the Stones and before the Beatles, there was Buddy. Seen by over 22 million fans since it opened in 1989, Buddy and his gang take to the stage next January and will have you rockin' and rollin in the aisles with classics such as That’ll Be The Day, Raining In My Heart and Peggy Sue. Sally Cookson's Olivier award winning production of A Monster Calls comes to The Lowry in February. An adaptation of Patrick Ness' critically acclaimed bestseller, it offers a powerful insight into love, life and healing through the story of thirteen year old Conor, as he is forced to face his deepest fears. 

Image credit: Royal Exchange Theatre via Facebook
In January, The Royal Exchange brings literature’s most electric couple, Cathy and Heathcliff, to life in Bruntwood Prize winner Andrew Sheridan’s bold re-invention of Bronte's Wuthering Heights.  Experience Emily Bronte as you’ve never seen before with a production that celebrates their passion and desire in a world that struggles to contain their love. “Could it be? Yes it could. Something’s coming...something good!” Almost sixty years since the show's Broadway debut, West Side Story continues to captivate audiences. Due to overwhelming demand it returns to The Royal Exchange, with Gabriela Garcia and Andy Coxon reprising their roles as Maria and Tony respectively. It may not be until April, but tickets are already flying out of the door, so book tickets now to avoid disappointment. 

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