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31st December 2022

Musicals of Manchester: January

Find out what musicals are coming to Manchester this January!
Musicals of Manchester: January
Photo: Mamma Mia!

Manchester has the greatest theatre scene outside of London. There’s numerous theatres, and a diverse selection of theatre (plays, cabaret, etc.), but musicals are, without a doubt, the most popular form of theatre. So here are the musicals coming to Manchester (and Salford) this December!

The Lion King

Palace Theatre

Thursday October 27 2022 – Saturday March 11 2023

“Set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains and to the evocative rhythms of Africa, Disney’s multi award-winning musical is a unique theatrical experience that you will remember forever.”
Production shot
Photo: The Lion King

Betty! A sort of Musical

Royal Exchange Theatre (The Theatre)

Saturday December 3 – Saturday January 14

“‘Here’s to a woman who conquered the murky world of Westminster with nothing but wit and gumption… and enough hairspray to turn a tsunami into a kiss curl.

As the first female speaker of the House of Commons, Betty Boothroyd is a Dewsbury girl to celebrate, and the five ladies (plus Calvin) of The Dewsbury Players are going to do just that… through the medium of musical theatre! Their high-kicks may be wobbly, their acting ‘enthusiastic’ and the props left over from a production of Miss Saigon; but, tonight, the Village Hall is their theatre of dreams! Emboldened by their heroine’s indefatigable tenacity, this amateur group prove themselves to be extraordinary women on and off stage.

Maxine Peake (Funny Cow & Anne) and Seiriol Davies (How to Win Against History) write and star in this brand-new production, directed by former Royal Exchange Theatre Artistic Director Sarah Frankcom. At a time when everything seems so polarised, Betty is a heart-warming celebration of the human spirit and the unexpected rewards that can come from thinking outside of the dispatch box.”

Betty A sort of Musical
Photo: Royal Exchange Theatre

Claus the Musical

The Lowry (Quays Theatre)

Wednesday December 14 – Sunday January 8

“How the Boy became a Man. How the Man became a Legend.”

From the writer of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz comes the world premiere of Claus The Musical. Based on the beloved children’s book The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus by L. Frank Baum, this brand-new musical is as magical as Christmas itself.

With spellbinding songs from Andy Collyer, heart-warming storytelling, enchanting sets, and a whole load of festive fun, discover the story of Claus and how he became a man forever in our hearts, and on Christmas Eve, forever in our skies.

Abandoned as a baby in the magical Forest of Burzee, he is gifted to Necile, a wood nymph, who showers him with love and names him Claus.  With a helping hand from the mystical inhabitants of the forest – Fairies, Knooks and Ryls – she teaches him that kindness is the most important lesson of all, a gift that Claus eventually shares with us, as he embarks on a journey to bring the miracle of Christmas to the whole world.

Make Christmas in 2022 unforgettable and book now!

Adapted for the stage by Simon Warne, Claus will warm the hearts of everyone from 7 to 97, and is a truly joyful production for the whole family to cherish and enjoy together.”

Photo: Claus the Musical

Musketeers: The Panto

The Lowry (Lowry Studio)

Friday January 6 – Sunday 8

“The Musketeers; Athos, Porthos, Aramis and D’Artagnan return for another swashbuckling adventure! The King’s crown has been stolen and an innocent woman has been framed for it – can the Musketeers solve the mystery in time? And who on earth is the Duke of Salford? Barton Theatre Company proudly presents another Pantoland Adventure written by Natasha Raso and Daniel Chadwick. Christmas fun for all the family. Recommended for ages 5 to 95.”

Photo: Barton Theatre Company

Pride & Prejudice* (*sort of)

The Lowry (Lyric Theatre)

Thursday January 19 – Saturday 21

“The five star comedy sensation

Direct from the West End

Direct from its triumph in the West End where it won the Laurence Olivier Award, Pride and Prejudice* (*sort of) is a unique and audacious retelling of Jane Austen’s most iconic love story. Men, money and microphones will be fought over in this irreverent but affectionate adaptation, where the stakes couldn’t be higher when it comes to romance. 

It’s the 1800s.
It’s party time.
Let the ruthless matchmaking begin.

Photo: Pride & Prejudice* (*sort of)


Head Over Heels

Hope Mill Theatre

Thursday January 26 – Saturday March 4

Head Over Heels is the bold new musical comedy from the visionaries that rocked Broadway with Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Avenue Q and Spring Awakening. This laugh-out-loud love story is set to the music of the iconic 1980’s all-female rock band The Go-Go’s, including the hit songs, ‘We Got the Beat,’ ‘Our Lips Are Sealed,’ ‘Vacation,’ Belinda Carlisle’s ‘Heaven is a Place on Earth’ and ‘Mad About You.’

A hilarious, exuberant celebration of love, Head Over Heels follows the escapades of a royal family on an outrageous journey to save their beloved kingdom from extinction—only to discover the key to their realm’s survival lies within each of their own hearts.”

Head Over Heels
Photo: Gartland Productions


Mamma Mia!

Opera House

Monday January 31 – Saturday February 11

“Set on a Greek island paradise, a story of love, friendship and identity is cleverly told through the timeless songs of ABBA.

Whatever age you are, you can’t help but have the time of your life at Mamma Mia!

Join us at Mamma Mai! and enjoy the ultimate feel-good factor at the world’s sunniest and most exhilarating smash-hit musical!

Sophie’s quest to discover the father she’s never known brings her mother face to face with three men from her distant romantic past on the eve of a wedding they’ll never forget.

Whatever age you are, you can’t help but have the time of your life at Mamma Mia!

Production shot
Photo: Mamma Mia!
So, there you have it – a splendid selection of marvellous musicals (and pantomimes) to choose from! Stay tuned for what’s on in February.
Jay Darcy

Jay Darcy

Theatre Editor. Instagram & Twitter: @jaydarcy7. Email: [email protected].

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