Theatre in Manchester and the North

Kristy Stott, Theatre Editor

Due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, our usual recommendations for theatre in Manchester and the North are a little different.

We most certainly cannot wait to be back in the stalls again…until then our theatre guide brings online theatre, dance and interactive performance for you to enjoy at home.

We are so grateful to National Lottery players, The National Lottery, DCMS and Arts Council England for supporting our freelance writers during this crisis. This means that, although venues remain shut and campaigns cancelled, our writers can be reengaged to help arts organisations and artists across the North of England share their online content with our culture-hungry readers.

Make sure to check back often – we’re adding more good cultural stuff as we find it.

Stay well.

Here are our picks

  • 1. Dr Blood’s Old Travelling Show at The Lowry

    Dr Blood's Old Travelling Show at The Lowry
    Image courtesy of imitating the dog.

    Dr Blood's Old Travelling Show at The Lowry, Manchester, 17 October 2020, from £5.00 - Book now

    imitating the dog bring all of their theatrical and technical brilliance for this unique outdoor performance.

  • 2. Black Gold Arts Festival 2020 with Contact

    Black Gold Arts Festival 2020
    Image courtesy of Black Gold Arts.

    Black Gold Arts Festival at Contact Theatre, Manchester and online, 23–25 October 2020, from £5.00 - Book now

    This October Contact present an all-digital version of the Black Gold Arts Festival featuring workshops, discussions, talks and performances.

  • 3. User Not Found: A Video Podcast with HOME

    User Not Found: A Video Podcast with HOME
    HOME

    User Not Found: A Video Podcast, online, Until 10 March 2021 - Book now

    Exploring digital legacy and online identity, acclaimed theatre-makers Dante or Die are back with a video podcast version of their hugely successful show.

  • 4. Contact Theatre

    exterior of Contact Theatre building

    Contact Theatre, Oxford Road, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M15 6JA - Visit now

    We’re pleased to announce that a £7m refurbishment of Contact has recently been completed, gearing up for performances to restart in early 2021. At such a difficult time for the arts industry, news like this really lifts the heart.

  • 5. Dracula by Northern Ballet

    Dracula by Northern Ballet
    Image courtesy of Northern Ballet.

    Dracula by Northern Ballet, online, Until 31 December 2020 - Book now

    Recorded at Leeds Playhouse on Halloween 2019, Bram Stoker’s gothic romance is brought to life in this stunning ballet.

  • 6. Hamilton – Streaming on Disney Plus

    Hamilton - Streaming on Disney Plus
    Image courtesy of Joan Marcus.

    Hamilton, online, Until 15 October 2021, from £5.99 - Book now

    Politically charged with a hip-hop soundtrack, there is no doubt that this filmed performance is one of the most eagerly anticipated releases of 2020.

  • 7. Homemakers

    online events I am falling in love with you and its making me do stupid things
    Bryony Kimmings in I am falling in love with you and its making me do stupid things

    Homemakers, online, Until 31 December 2020 - Book now

    HOME have invited theatre and live art makers to create new works at home, for an audience who are also at home.

  • 8. Locked down. Locked in. But living. with the Lawrence Batley Theatre

    Locked Down. Locked In. But Living
    Image courtesy of Studio Wayne McGregor

    Locked Down. Locked In. But Living. at Lawrence Batley Theatre and online, Until 18 October 2020, from £12.00 - Book now

    Northern Ballet, Studio Wayne McGregor and the Gary Clarke Company present a thrilling evening of world-class original contemporary dance to enjoy at home.

  • 9. The Believers Are But Brothers at HOME

    The Believers Are But Brothers at HOME
    HOME

    The Believers Are But Brothers at HOME Manchester, Manchester, 3–5 November 2020, from £10.00 - Book now

    Created by Alipoor, this award-winning performance uses WhatsApp to take audiences on a journey into a world of fantasy, violence and radicalisation.

  • 10. A Christmas Carol at Storyhouse

    A Christmas Carol at Storyhouse
    Image courtesy of Peter Cook - Storyhouse.

    A Christmas Carol at Storyhouse, Chester, 7 November 2020–17 January 2021, from £23.00 - Book now

    You will go to a Christmas show this year…packed with song, laughter and festive joy, head to Chester for a cracking adaptation of Dickens’ timeless tale.

More in Theatre

I Don’t Love You Anymore, But I Don’t Love You Any Less with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

I Don’t Love You Anymore, But I Don’t Love You Any Less with HOME

A Young Identity and Homemakers commission, this is an audio poem exploring universal uncertainty at a time of great change.

Chasing On A Dream with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

Chasing On A Dream with HOME

Fusing music and spoken word, Young identity present this new work by Saf Elsenoss as part of Homemakers.

Memories of a Moss Sidian with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

Memories of a Moss Sidian with HOME

Presented by Young Identity, this collection of 4 poems examines the ethereal qualities of our lived experiences, once we look back on them as memories.

They keep telling me that my house is on fire with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

They keep telling me that my house is on fire with HOME

Using soundscape and film, this Young Identity Homemakers commission explores the burning house analogy often given as an explanation to those who say ‘all lives matter’.

The Very Error Of The Moon with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

The Very Error Of The Moon with HOME

Shot entirely on a smartphone and GoPro throughout lockdown, this perceptive short film examines the costs of being ‘othered’ in a radicalised world.

I am all the Rooms of the House with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

I am all the Rooms of the House with HOME

Exploring love, loss and reclamation, a house is vividly brought to life in this metaphorical poem by writer-performer Hester Ullyart.

Poetry Health Service with Oldham Coliseum
Literature Until 31 December 2020, FREE

Poetry Health Service with Oldham Coliseum

Offering contemporary poetry as a tool for healing and connection, PHS is a brand-new online literary cure-all.

My Darling Christopher with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

My Darling Christopher with HOME

Innovative, visual and inclusive, this short film uses unique theatrical language to shine a light on a Deaf person’s experience of war.

Absent Tense with HOME
Theatre Until 31 December 2020,

Absent Tense with HOME

Inspired by the first 12 weeks of lockdown and presented in 12 parts, Absent Tense is an audio essay and accompanying publication that reflects the presence of absence in our lives right now.

Culture Guides

Cinema in Manchester and the North

We look at the socially distant screenings and digital releases you can enjoy as cinemas begin to reopen safely.

Images of protest: Black Lives Matter at People's History Museum

Exhibitions

Art and women’s wrestling, Ancient Akkadian gravesites and invented artefacts – check out this month’s pick of exhibitions from across the north.

Makefest At Home

Families

Need some inspiration for online activities and creative family fun? Look no further than our top picks online for families across Manchester and the North.

Poet Dean Atta. Photo by Hussina Raja.

Literature

Festival fever takes hold of Live Literature Land as it does every October, just this year it’s in the ether. Grab a glass and settle down in the Zoom room for some online readings.

Bicep

Music

Discover the best live-streamed concerts, broadcasts, musical activities and exhibitions on offer during lockdown Mk II.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester.

Higher Ground

Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

For the August guide, we’ve dug out the best Food and Drink in Manchester and the North to explore now that lockdown has thankfully eased.

Isolation Broadcast

Online events

Discover the best things to do online from the organisations we love in Manchester and the North.

tours and activities

Tours and Activities

Socially distant walks and virtual tours are among the offerings in this month’s guide of Tours and Activities.