Theatre in Manchester and the North

Kristy Stott

In the build-up to the festive season, there’s a surprisingly diverse offering of theatre throughout the North. There’s the usual abundance of pantomime with Oldham Coliseum’s Dick Whittington standing out as being the pick of the bunch. Alternatively, The Theatre by the Lake, nestled in the beautiful Cumbrian countryside, offers something a little different with a magical production of The Secret Garden.

For those looking for alternative Christmas fare, it might be best to leave the family at home and check out Neverland at Sheffield’s Theatre Deli, Guys and Dolls at the Royal Exchange and Hot Brown Honey at HOME.

Read on for these recommendations and more theatrical goodness.

Here are our picks

Culture Guides


Featuring animation, fairy tales and festive cheer. Cosy up with some first-class cinema this winter.


Can you imagine what Armageddon smells like? Want to learn how to grow your own hormones? Read on for this month’s top pick of exhibitions.


Adventure and light are where it’s at. Chester Zoo is transformed into a magical sorting office, there’s detective heaven at the Secret Seven and we preview some alternative things to do and see this winter holiday.

Nicholas Royle. Credit Zoe McLean


Some fantastic live lit offerings, including the 13th Chorlton Book Festival, avant-garde regular Peter Barlow’s Cigarette showcasing some Forward Prize-winning work, Bad Language v Lit Up, Verbose and Evidently, and the annual glittering Manchester Prize Gala.


Manchester’s concert halls and former Wesleyan chapels serve up folky treats in the form of Lau, Jesca Hoop, The Unthanks and more over the coming months. We also explore all things classical from Manchester Camerata and the BBC Philharmonic – and start looking ahead to next year’s festival season.

Destination Guides

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