What’s On in Manchester – March 2019

Deal or no deal? Will there be a People’s Vote or a delayed Brexit? March 2019 is a month that will decide Britain’s future, but who knows what that it will bring? There are still so many uncertainties surrounding Brexit. But one thing is certain – Manchester has some cracking theatre in March that will help take your mind off what’s happening in Westminster.

Here is a selection of what you can catch in Manchester’s theatres this month:-



On until 9th March 2019

I had a drink. She had no seatbelt on… Pure drink driving is all it was”… Or was it?

Seven years ago, the wife of Mick Dowd, the local gravedigger, died under mysterious circumstances. Although he pleads his innocence, claiming it was a drink driving accident, this is not enough to stop the local villagers casting their aspersions. Rumour has it, Mick murdered Oona. When his job leads him to exhume bodies from the graveyard, he discovers that her bones are missing.

Penned by the Academy Award winning writer of In Bruges and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, this is a delightfully dark comedy, perfectly poised with mystery and intrigue. Only a “feckin idjit” would miss this skull-cracking play!

You can read my review of the show here, and head to Oldham Coliseum’s website to book tickets.



2nd March – 6th April 2019

The magnificent Hope Mill Theatre will host the UK’s premiere of Rags the Musical.

It tells the powerful story of Jewish immigrants as they arrive in New York to start a new life in America. A young mother and her son search for a sense of belonging in this heart-warming tale of love, hope and optimism.

Accompanied with a musical score, from the songwriters of Wicked and Annie, that captures the multicultural music that was filling the streets of New York in 1910. The streets may not be paved with gold, but the music that reverberates around them signals opportunity and hope.

Tickets are available on Hope Mill Theatre’s website.



5th – 9th March 2019

A year ago, I would never have thought about going to watch an opera. I had many blind conceptions about opera that were proved utterly wrong when I watched Opera North’s Tosca. Now a convert to this art form, I have been eagerly anticipating Opera North’s return to the Lowry with their new programme:-

The Magic Flute  = An epic take about growing up and learning to love, Mozart’s opera follows Prince Tamino on his quest to rescue Pamina, daughter of the Queen of the Night, who is held captive by the Priest of the Sun.

Katya Kabanova = In Leoš Janácek’s erotic, tense opera, Katya Kabanova embarks on a love affair whilst her husband is away on business.

The Rite of Spring and Gianni Schicchi = Opera combined with ballet, the first half of this double-bill merges Phoenix Dance Theatre’s performance of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring with opera. The second half is a wickedly funny operatic short, Gianni Schicchi.



6th March – 15th March 2019

Based on real experiences, this newly extended play follows Lee as he finds his way through a ten year sentence in prison after making a terrible mistake. The Stretch is a powerful and poignant play showing the highs and lows of prison life. It also focuses on the struggle offenders face trying to rehabilitate themselves back into society.

When government funding of the prison service is chronically low, this feels like a startlingly relevant story, exposing the impact that austerity cuts have had on prisons and their inmates.

You can buy tickets here.



7th – 23rd March 2019

For generations, African men have gathered in barber shops. They are the social hub of the community. Whilst the men get their hair cut, they talk about everything from football to politics. The attentive barbers become sages, role models and father figures.

Told across one day and six different cities, the multiple narrative accounts stretch from Johannesburg, Harare, Kampala, Lagos, Accra to London. It certainly sounds very interesting!

Barber Shop Chronicles is a co-production with the Contact Theatre, Fuel, the National Theatre and Leeds Playhouse.

Tickets can be purchased through the Royal Exchange Theatre’s website.



On until 23rd March 2019

The sensational West End hit visits Manchester’s Opera House on its national tour.

Featuring classic Motown hits like I Heard it Through the Grapevine, Aint No Mountain High Enough, and My Girl, this musical dramatises the life of Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown Records.

Starting with  just $800, this rags to riches story shines a deserving spotlight on an overlooked legend. This is a man who undoubtedly changed the musical world, establishing the careers of legends like Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and The Temptations.

Who doesn’t like a bit of Motown?

Tickets are available via ATG Tickets


Of course, these are not the only shows you can watch in March, just a selection of what Manchester has to offer. A night out at the theatre will provide the perfect solace from the relentless tirade of Brexit!


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