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6 Best Theatres in Manchester

In this article, we will look into the 6 Best Theatres in Manchester. But let’s start with knowing a bit about Manchester.

Greater Manchester, England’s city of Manchester. 552,000 people called it home according to the United Kingdom census of 2021.

The Greater Manchester Built-up Area, which has a population of 2.87 million, is made up of the two cities and the nearby towns. It is one of the most populated conurbations in the United Kingdom.

The city is renowned for its architecture, culture, musical exports, connections with the media, contributions to science and engineering, social effect, sports clubs, and transportation options.

Manchester has many contemporary entertainment options for you to discover. Manchester, widely recognized as the birthplace of Oasis and Brit-pop, isn’t afraid to put on a show for the crowd.

There are numerous concert halls, cultural institutions and theatres in Manchester where you may go to see performances of music, stand-up comedy, and slam poetry.

Image by Kevan Craft from Pixabay

Now let’s hop into the information you were looking for, i.e. finding the best theatre in Manchester.

The top theatres in Manchester present a wide variety of performing arts on everything from little stages to enormous venues. Several of these locations are historical landmarks with stunning architecture and exceptional acoustics.

They also regularly host award-winning plays, classical dance performances, and musical productions.

1.  Here are the Best Theatres in Manchester

1.1 Royal Exchange Theatre

Both the Royal Exchange Theatre and the Royal Exchange Shopping Center are theatres in Manchester housed in the Royal Exchange, a historic structure.

The theatre, which incorporates a smaller theatre called the Studio where travelling theatrical companies and comedians perform, is one of the few in-the-round theatres in the world.

The Royal Exchange typically hosts 350 professional theatre shows yearly. Many people visit the theatre to get tickets to see performances and activities, but you may also arrange to take a volunteer-led tour.

The tours, which are 90 minutes long, provide insight into stories of the building’s past and cultural importance.

Theatres in Manchester
Screenshot / The Royal Exchange Theatre

1.1.1 Highlights of The Royal Exchange Theatre

Armoghan Mohammad is announced as Royal Exchange chair of Trustees alongside Kate Vokes as deputy chair.

Armoghan serves as PwC’s Regional Chair for the North, where he is in charge of the practice’s personnel, clients, and community involvement in the area.

He provides a depth of knowledge and a strong passion for the value of the arts and culture in the community.

With Armoghan’s new position, Bruntwood Non-Executive Director and current Board Member Kate Vokes will take over as Deputy Chair.

Because of her long-standing connection to the Royal Exchange and her work with the Bruntwood Prize, she has a thorough understanding of the theatre.

The Exchange is thrilled to present this outstanding Trustee relationship today.

Location: St Ann’s Square, Manchester, M2 7DH, UK

Phone: +44 (0)1618 339836

1.2 The Lowry

The Lowry is one of the theatres in Manchester and also a gallery complex where dance performances, art and culture exhibitions, musical and comedy performances, and other events are held.

There is a coffee shop for refreshments in the morning or afternoon during your visit, and the complex also contains a restaurant with live entertainment like quiz nights and wine tastings.

The Lowry welcomes almost 900,000 guests annually and is one of Greater Manchester’s most visited attractions as theatres in Manchester.

The Lowry offers something for every kind of traveller, including families with children, with its broad selection of classical and contemporary concerts, art exhibitions, and cultural events.

Theatres in Manchester
Screenshot/ The Lowry

1.2.1 Highlights of The Lowry

Touring plays, musical performances, comedic performances, and the Opera North are all presented at The Lowry’s two theatres in Manchester and drama studio.

Dial M for Murder, Six, Unfortunate – A Concert, and comedic performances by legends like Jon Courtenay, Al Murray, and Dave Spikey are just a few of the previous productions.

The art gallery offers professional presentations, guided tours, and both changing and ongoing exhibitions.

The gallery’s main attraction is its public collection of works by LS Lowry, a 20th-century painter best known for his depictions of the industrial landscape of North West England and the complex’s eponym.

The Natural World, Reflections, Life in Lockdown, and collections of important artists’ work are other offerings.

Location: Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ, UK

Open: Monday–Thursday from noon to 8 pm, Friday–Sunday from 11.30 am to 8.30 pm

Phone: +44 (0)3432 086000

1.3 The Stoller Hall 

One of the top music schools in the UK, the esteemed Chetham’s School of Music, is home to The Stoller Hall, our next theatre in the list of top theatres in Manchester.

The organization is well-known throughout the world in the music industry. Both locations may be found on Manchester’s north side, close to the Green Quarter and NOMA, two up-and-coming hipster hotspots.

The hall was just finished in 2016, so it isn’t ancient. To ensure audiences hear the cleanest sound possible in the auditorium, extensive collaboration with specialized acoustics businesses was a necessary element of the construction process.

The hall now features concerts by travelling VIPs and students from the institution with an emphasis on classical, world, folk, and jazz music.

Theatres in Manchester
Screenshot /The Stoller Hall

1.3.1 Highlights of The Stoller Hall

This brand of performance venue was built in 2017 as part of a £31 million The goal of Chetham’s development was to provide cutting-edge facilities for students at the renowned organization, which is today the largest music school in the UK.

It should go without saying that the concert venue complements the new structure as a whole. There are just 482 places for music lovers in The Stoller Hall.

That is close enough to hear every movement, let alone the notes themselves, which all sound superb thanks to the design experts Arup who make sure every little detail satisfies the orchestra of theatre.

Location: Hunts Bank, Manchester M3 1DA, UK

Open: Daily from 9 am to 9 pm

Phone: +44 (0)33 3130 0967

1.4 Manchester Opera House

The Opera House Manchester is one of the theatres in Manchester that present ballet performances, concerts from a range of performers, travelling versions of famous musical theatre acts, and a Christmas Pageant.

In Quay Street, in the center of Manchester, the building is a historic Grade II listed structure.

The Opera House first debuted as the New Theatre in 1912 before changing its name to New Queen’s Theatre in 1915 and finally adopting its current name in 1920.

The structure has undergone numerous transformations; for five years, it was a bingo hall. It is currently one of the top theatres in Manchester.

Theatres in Manchester
Screenshot /Manchester Opera House

1.4.1 Highlights of The Opera House Manchester

Shakespeare, the newest Broadway and award-winning musicals, concerts by some of the biggest international stars, comedy shows, and other live entertainment may all be seen at the Opera House and theatres in Manchester.

It is renowned for both its architectural and historical significance.

The theatre, which has a symmetrical 15-bay front, a 5-bay centre, and fluted ionic columns, is a magnificent example of classical architecture.

A moulded cornice with brackets is present on the roof. Over the middle bays, a relief depicting a horse-drawn chariot passing beneath an arch rises. It has 1,920 seats and a stage that is 12.8 by 11.2 metres.

Location: 3 Quay St, Manchester M3 3HP, UK

Open: Hours vary

Phone: +44 (0)8448 713018

1.5 Contact Theatre

The Contact Theatre is all about elevating youth and emerging artistic talent.

The venue is a part of the University of Manchester campus and is situated on Brisbane Street, just off Oxford Road, on Manchester’s south side.

The concept is that individuals between the ages of 13 and 30 have curated the whole art programme.

As a result, you can anticipate a great variety of shows that examine subjects like growing up, becoming an adult, and gender politics.

The Contact Theatre has a particular programme for artist development that is focused on fostering young actors from Manchester.

Theatres in Manchester
Screenshot /Contact Theatre

1.5.1 Highlights of The Contact Theatre

Professional performances created or commissioned by Contact are included in the public show and festival schedule, along with performances by the Contact Young Company created in association with notable performers and touring productions chosen by students and staff.

There are other yearly events with a particular focus, such Queer Contact.

Alan Short created the eccentric exterior, which has unusual chimneys that create an assisted natural ventilation system so that Contact does not require air conditioning and that fresh air organically permeates the structure.

The use of energy was significantly reduced by the chimneys.

Location: Oxford Rd, Manchester M15 6JA, UK

Phone: +44 (0)1612 740600

1.6 Palace Theatre

A variety of stage productions and performances are presented in the performing arts centre and historic structure known as The Palace Theatre Manchester.

The Ambassador Theatre Group manages both the Palace Theatre and its sibling theatre, the Opera House.

The Palace Theatre Manchester, one of Manchester’s bigger theatres, presents a variety of plays for audiences of different tastes.

It’s a must-see sight for all tourists because you can watch anything there, from opera and ballet to adult comedy and stage performances to family-friendly productions.

The theatre regularly organizes touring productions so that patrons can see new works.

Theatres in Manchester
By: screenshot /Palace Theatre

1.6.1 Highlights of The Palace Theatre Manchester

This last theatre in our list of theatres in Manchester debuted in 1891 under the name Grand Old Lady of Oxford Street.

The theatre underwent numerous renovations and restorations throughout the years before suffering serious damage during the Manchester Blitz. Currently, Manchester’s Palace Theatre is among the biggest and best theatres in the Country.

Opera, ballet, comedies, and concerts are all presented at Palace Theatre Manchester, along with notable touring productions.

The theatre has featured some of the most well-known performances, such as “Miss Saigon,” “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” “Mamma Mia!” and “Mary Poppins.” Moreover, the theatre hosted the world premiere of the play “Prima Donna,” an opera by Rufus Wainwright.

Location: 97 Oxford St, Manchester M1 6FT, UK

Phone: +44 (0)3330 096690

2. Wrapping Up 

So this was our list of the top 6 Theatres in Manchester.

If you are visiting Manchester for the first time you must try the following activities:

  • Canal & River Cruise: Take a picturesque sail down the River Irwell and the storied Ship Canal in Manchester. See the northern industrial region of England and visit landmarks like Stephenson’s Railway Bridge.
  • Lake District and Windermere: Learn about the history of Windermere, England’s largest lake, as you travel through the captivating landscapes of the Lake District.
  • City Bus Tour: On an open-top sightseeing bus, explore Manchester. Explore the city centre and Salford Quays while listening to the recorded narration about the city’s industrial background and taking in the sights.
  • North Wales, Snowdonia, and Chester Tour: Discover Chester and North Wales’ mountains, wonders, and myths. With a knowledgeable guide, set off on a journey around the top must-see attractions. Enjoy a magnificent combination of majestic castles and stunning scenery.
  • Old Trafford: Manchester United Museum and Stadium Tour: Learn everything there is to know about Manchester United’s past. Get access to the players’ dugout, changing room, tunnel, and other exclusive spaces.
  • Etihad Stadium: Manchester City Stadium and Museum Tour: Take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Etihad Stadium and Museum in the footsteps of your favourite players with a knowledgeable professional guide who will bring each location to life with engaging tales.
  • National Football Museum Admission Ticket: Learn about the history of the world’s most popular sport over the past 150 years and the global impact of English football. See amazing artifacts while reliving the feelings, memories, and drama of illustrious matches.
  • SEA LIFE Entrance Ticket: Visit the SEA LIFE Manchester to get up and personal with more than 2,000 creatures as you explore a world of amazing marine species!

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