Exchange is back in business

Published: 23 May 2021
Reporter: David Upton

Royal Exchange Theatre Credit: Joel Fildes

On June 23, Manchester Royal Exchange Theatre reopens after more than a year of the doors being closed to the public with Roy Alexander Weise and Bryony Shanahan’s first programme as artistic directors.

The planned plays and events focus on love, self-discovery, protest, faith and resilience.

Shanahan opens the programme with the world première of Bloody Elle—A Gig Musical. Written and performed by Lauryn Redding, the one-woman show is about falling in love for the very first time.

The Elders and Young Company come together to create and perform a new intergenerational production, exploring all things funny. Wit & Wisdom promises to be an anarchic night on Friday and Saturday July 23–24.

The Theatre’s Local Exchange programme continued throughout lockdown, engaging Ambassador groups across Leigh, Cheetham Hill, Tameside and Beswick. This summer, they present The Den In Leigh for the first two weeks of August at Spinners Mill in Leigh, Greater Manchester. It runs from August 4-14.

The Exchange’s Young Company show, The Survivors’ Guide To Living, is co-created by writer Zodwa Nyoni and the performers. It explores what it means to radically find happiness, yourself and imagination when the world feels like it doesn't make sense and runs August 26–28.

In Stuart Slade’s prize-winning comedy Glee & Me, we meet 16-year-old Lola in a pitch-black, unexpectedly optimistic portrayal of love, friendship and the extraordinary resilience of the human spirit. Opening on September 11, it will run in rep with The Mountaintop until October 30.

The latter received a digital reading at the Exchange during lockdown as a response to the Black Lives Matter movement.

September 15 marks 45 years since the Exchange opened its doors to the public.