Summer Shakespeare Festival at the Great Northern Amphitheatre

Part of our Families guide

Kristy Stott, Theatre Editor
Summer Shakespeare Festival
Image courtesy of Cream Faced Loons Theatre Company.

Summer Shakespeare Festival at Great Northern, City Centre, 29 July–15 August 2021, from £1.00 - Book now

If you’ve ever taken a lingering look at the basin of the amphitheatre just in front of the Great Northern Warehouse and thought that’d be a great space for an outdoor theatre production – then you’re in luck.

For three weeks this summer a brand new outdoor Summer Shakespeare Festival will descend on the Great Northern’s Amphitheatre.

Supported by Arts Council England funding, The Goat Mcr (Great Open Air Theatre, Manchester) are bringing a full programme of Shakespearean performances, family shows, interactive workshops and competitions to the beating heart of the city.

At the centre of the festival is a brand new production of Much Ado About Nothing developed in partnership with Manchester-based theatre company The Cream Based Loons. This fabulous retelling, featuring just five performers, has been written especially for the space and the people of Manchester. This show is a pay-what-you-can production with a whopping 18 shows running throughout the festival – so no one needs to miss out on any Shakespeare this summer.

The Tragedy of Macbeth by the award-winning London collective Flabbergast Theatre will run for two performances on 14 August too. An edgy interpretation with a powerful soundscape, Flabbergast bring immense physicality, ritualistic drumming and clowning to the bloodthirsty Shakespearean tragedy.

Written by David Visick, Waiting for Hamlet is a new play and the recipient of the 2018 Kenneth Branagh New Drama Writing award. The comedy drama reimagines King Hamlet and Yorick as two old fools caught up in a battle of wits. Lamphouse Theatre bring a lo-fi and playful retelling of Romeo and Juliet. With two actors and just one suitcase, this is a terrific show for youngsters who are just discovering Shakespeare for the first time.

The shows will go on come rain or shine – so make sure you’re dressed and prepared for all the eventualities expected of a Mancunian summer.

Summer Shakespeare Festival at Great Northern, City Centre

29 July–15 August 2021
From £1.00