September Plays

Three Shakespeare Plays

It is fitting that the first month of this blog should feature three very different Shakespeare plays.  It is also highly unusual, as Shakespeare is not normally a feature of the Manchester theatre scene.  Nevertheless, all three of these shows should offer challenging, innovative theatre.

Romeo and Juliet

Victoria Baths

Victoria Baths

First up is Romeo and Juliet.  Running from 10 September to 4 October, this site specific production at the Victoria Baths will see the three swimming pools  in the iconic Baths transformed into a stage  for a new interpretation of Romeo and Juliet, ‘a contemporary fairytale in a setting inspired by a criminal underworld of Eastern Europe’.

This latest production from HOME, which has morphed from the Library Theatre, follows the hugely successful ‘Angel Meadow’ in producing innovative site specific theatre in Manchester.  Angel Meadow was amazing, and I expect this to be too.

Maxine Peake Hamlet

Hamlet – Maxine Peake

Hamlet

The second play is Hamlet at the Royal Exchange, running from 11 September – 18 October.  According to the Royal Exchange:

‘every Hamlet is defined by the actor. In this stripped back, fresh and fast-paced version, Maxine Peake creates a Hamlet for now, a Hamlet for Manchester.’

Maxine Peake has become truly one of Manchester’s favourite actresses over the past few years, including a superb performance in the ‘Masque of Anarchy’ at the Albert Hall (that in Manchester of course) during last summer’s International Festival.

This is a production full of expectation and uncertainty.  Which roles will be changed?  How successful will this be?  I am looking forward to seeing how this turns out.

Gullivers

Gullivers in the Northern Quarter

Othello

Third, something a little different, Othello set in an Italian football team at a venue I have never before been to.  Gullivers in the Northern Quarter hosts the latest from Lass Productions (from 22 September) who describe the play as:

‘our production of Othello will be set in and around Venezia FC. By setting the play in a football club, which has never been done we believe we can refresh and re-examine the themes of jealousy, reputation and ambition that remain as true today as they were 450 years ago’.

I love Manchester’s fringe theatre scene, you never know what to expect and sometimes the plays are just superb.

Overall, a great set of plays for the first month of this blog.  One venue I know very well, one unusual venue that I have visited in the past and one that I have never been to.  Three Shakespeare plays I have seen before but never like this!  Looking forward to September already!

 

Theatre lover, amateur director, occasional actor, writer.

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