The Lowry invites you to rethink theatre with the third Week 53 festival spanning 11 days and over 70 performances. Bringing together artists from around the UK, Europe and the US, expect a dynamic programme of contemporary drama, dance, comedy and interactive installations encompassing music, technology and nouveau cirque. Setting out to challenge convention and celebrate creativity, 100 artists will be exploring the theme of ‘coming of age’, from a re-imagination of the ballet classic Swan Lake to an aerial performance featuring Japanese knot-tying, and from a feminist podcast featuring Julie Hesmondhalgh to the stage premiere of Nigel Slater’s Toast. Here are our top five picks – click here for more in-depth previews across the site.

Comedy-meets-theatre at Fat Roland: Seven Inch
First up, and already with extra dates added (now running Thu 17 (this performance has now sold out), Fri 18, Thu 24 & Fri 25 May), is one-man spoken word comedy show and special Week 53 Commission Fat Roland: Seven Inch, about music, loneliness and not-quite-teenage kicks.

Site-specific theatre at Barton Arcade: Madhouse re:exit
Also starting on the opening night (and running until Sat 26 May), but away from The Lowry in the glass and wrought iron delight that is Barton Arcade, is Madhouse re:exit – a site-specific performance exploring experiences of being learning disabled.

Teenagers in charge: Nightwalks & more
The Teentalitarianism series of theatre events takes adult audiences into a world where teenagers are in charge – Friday 18 to Sunday 20 May it’s Nightwalks, Saturday 19 May Sex, Drugs & Criminality has its turn and Saturday 26 May is Dare Night.

Film screening-come-disco: Girl Gang Manchester’s Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion party
Saturday 19 May sees female collective Girl Gang Manchester host a club night-slash-immersive screening of 1990s comedy movie Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion.

One for retro gadget lovers: Hacked on Classics
Monday 28 May there are two presentations of Hacked on Classics, celebrating technology and all things digital from the last 40 years, and great fun for geeks and retro gadget fans.

All tickets for Week 53 are either free, £10 or £20, and every production will also have a limited number of Pay What You Decide tickets, so there’s no excuse not to try something new.

Thu 17 – Mon 28 May, The Lowry, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ, Tel: 0843 208 6000, times and prices vary,

Thu 17 May - Mon 28 May
Sarah-Clare Conlon
Published on:
Fri 13 Apr 2018