Monday, 10 November 2014

'Scuttler's play at the Royal Exchange

The book about the Manchester Scuttlers
entitled 'The Gangs of Manchester' by
Andrew Davis, was reviewed extensively in
Northern Voices 10 by Derek Pattison.

THROUGHOUT the 1870s and beyond the streets of Openshaw, Gorton, Ancoats and Salford were terrorised by rival groups of young mill workers fighting for control.  With their belt-bottoms and floppy caps they fought with blades, fists, feet and the heavy ends of their leather belts.

Rona Munro’s tough and tender story begins one hot evening in August; the mills are constantly at work and the neighbourhood gangs are circling each other, vying for territory. Tension builds and a fight erupts that changes lives forever.

This is the thrilling story of young people navigating a life without respect; parents have let them down, homelessness is inevitable, and a sense of place and purpose can only be found on the streets. Based on real court reports, it’s timeless and timely with themes that resonate with remarkable clarity 150 years on.

Wils Wilson is an award winning Director and site-specific theatre maker. Her recent work includes Praxis Makes Perfect (National Theatre Wales); Gastronauts (Royal Court); ANON, (WNO); The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart (National Theatre of Scotland) which has been touring nationally and internationally since 2010.

Rona Munro has written extensively for stage, radio, film and television including the trilogy THE JAMES PLAYS for the National Theatre of Scotland, The National Theatre and the Edinburgh International Festival.

The play will be on at the Theatre from 5 February 2015 - 7 March 2015.

'I love the Royal Exchange because the relationship between the audience and the performers is so immediate. There’s a shared sense of making the theatre happen together - a kind of deal between the audience and the performers.'  Wils Wilson, Director

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