At last, the majestic Manchester Opera House is back, and presenting an acclaimed lineup of mainstream theatrical productions, occasional music gigs, opera and ballet.
Direct from electrifying audiences in London, Toronto, Germany and New York, Jim Steinman’s spectacular musical Bat Out of Hell is playing until early October, before a vivacious new version of Grease takes to the stage. Comedian Alan Carr will also be performing, alongside live podcasts from the likes of No Such Thing As A Fish and a number of sing-a-long events.
As ever, opening hours are dictated by the performances. The box office is only open for 90 minutes before each showing and the Opera House isn’t open to the public outside of these performances. As to be expected, multiple entrances and exits are in use, plus a one-way system around the venue. Also expect hand sanitiser, enhanced signage and contactless payment throughout.
And there are some other adjustments to usual proceedings, designed to keep staff, performers and attendees safe and happy. Make sure you book in advance as the opportunity to purchase tickets at the door will be greatly reduced. Electronic ticketing is the method going forward, reducing the risk of transmission. The bars are open as normal, with a new advance purchase ‘click & collect’ service for food and drink and a website for patrons to order at their seats.
Of course, the Grade II Manchester Opera House, affectionately referred to as the Opera House by most Mancunians, is one of the largest theatres in Manchester. The venue plays host to an array of events – including mainstream theatrical productions, ballets, operas, occasional music gigs and a popular Christmas pantomime each year.
Manchester Opera House will continue to attract the very best in entertainment and we’re delighted to have it back
With an ornate proscenium arch, the Opera House is grand: a neo-Classical, Grade II listed building on Quay Street that saw a major refurbishment in 2003. With a seating capacity of 1,920, two cantilevered, curved balconies inside the auditorium can hold 500 seats each. The spacious stage, which is 42 feet deep, and orchestra pit, holding 80 musicians, makes the Opera House a superb venue for musicals and orchestral performances.
Although the theatre was redecorated in March 2011, the traditional and emblematic green and gold colour scheme inside of the auditorium was preserved.
The Opera House has played host to several acclaimed productions and has hosted world premieres on its iconic stage. In 1958, the venue hosted the premiere European performance of West Side Story and the regional premiere of The Phantom of the Opera. The Phantom of the Opera saw a successful run from 1993 to 1995. Gorillaz also took to the stage here for Demon Days Live in 2005 as a Manchester International Festival pre-festival commission.
More recently, the world premiere of Ghost the Musical was held at the theatre in 2011 before the production transferred to London’s West End and the UK premiere of the Dolly Parton musical 9 to 5 began its UK tour at the theatre in 2012. The Manchester Opera House also saw the premiere of Never Forget, the Take That musical, where the DVD copy of the production was filmed on the press night.
Inside the beautiful building, theatre-goers will find bars on every level, with hospitality packages available for those special occasions. Standing proud on Quay Street, Manchester Opera House will continue to attract the very best in entertainment and we’re delighted to have it back.