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We have been forced to temporarily close our stages due to COVID 19. This has been an incredibly difficult and complex decision to make. The impact of this crisis remains unknown and we will not emerge from it the same, but we are putting everything we can in place in order to ensure we are able to light up our stages once again.

Practically this decision provides us with the time to plan and affords us the space to carefully develop an artistic programme, and to carry on creating shared experiences, plan innovative community work and provide much needed escapism for audiences and participants in these unsettling times.

Thank you so much to all our audiences for the support, understanding and generosity you have shown so far. Please keep in touch with us by following us on social media – there are still ways for you to get involved with theatre activities, and we are coming up with new initiatives all the time.

Our stages may be empty and our building may be closed but we cannot imagine a life without stories. #RXconnect
Stay safe and well and we will see you when the houselights go back on.

Frequently Asked Questions
As the situation is changing daily, we might not be able to provide all the answers, but here are some FAQs which might be helpful…

  • Are the Royal Exchange Theatre and The Rivals closed?
  • Following the Government instruction on 20 March 2020 to close theatres, bars and restaurants, both the Royal Exchange Theatre and The Rivals Bar and Restaurant are closed until further notice.

    Please check our website and social media channels (Twitter, Facebook & Instagram) to stay up to date on when we will be able to welcome you back to our building.

  • What happens if I had a ticket for ROCKETS AND BLUE LIGHTS?
  • If you had booked for ROCKETS AND BLUE LIGHTS you should have received an email from us.

    If you did not receive it then it will probably be because we do not have your email address on file. Please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details of your booking and we can let you know the next steps.  

  • What happens if I had a ticket for IDOL, CAROL ANN DUFFY, THE DEPARTMENT OF DISTRACTIONS, MADAME OVARY, OVER MY DEAD BODY?
  • If you had booked for one of these shows you should have received an email from us.

    If you did not receive it then it will probably be because we do not have your email address on file. Please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details of your booking and we can let you know the next steps.

  • What happens if I have a ticket for WEST SIDE STORY?
  • If you have booked a ticket for WEST SIDE STORY – you should have received an email from us.

    If you did not receive it then it will probably be because we do not have your email address on file. Please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details of your booking and we can let you know the next steps.

  • Will WEST SIDE STORY be rescheduled?
  • We are following Government and the UK Theatre advice at all times, so at present we can’t say for certain when we will reopen.  This means we’re unable to confirm any future performance dates. We really hope to have more information about our opening season very soon, and as soon as we know more we will update the information here.

  • What happens if I’m a Season Ticket Holder?
  • If you have not heard from us – it may be that we do not have your email address on file.  As this is currently the only way we can communicate with people, please let us know at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details about your booking or select one of the options in the email.

  • What happens if I have a ticket to one of the other shows or events in the season?
  • THE GLASS MENAGERIE, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, OH MOTHER, ELECTRIC ROSARY, SMITH, GIRL MEETS BOY, CATCHING COMETS OR ANY BACKSTAGE TOURS.

    If you are a ticket holder to one of the shows listed above, you will be receiving an email from us with information about next steps. We’re currently working through our shows chronologically, and with reduced staff who are all working remotely.  Thanks so much for bearing with us as we try and deal with your booking as efficiently as possible.

  • When will you reopen?
  • We hope to reopen in the Autumn. As we are following Government and the UK Theatre advice at all times, at present we do not know when we will be able to reopen. Please check our website and social media channels (Twitter, Facebook & Instagram) or sign up to our mailing list royalexchange.co.uk/mailinglist to stay up to date on when we will be able to welcome you back to our building.

  • Will the productions be restaged at a later date?
  • We are currently exploring how we might bring some of these shows to our audiences. Please check our website and social media channels (Twitter, Facebook & Instagram) to stay up to date with our opening season announcements, or sign up to our mailing list here royalexchange.co.uk/mailinglist

  • I have a question – who can I speak to?
  • To contact us, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    We apologise if it takes longer than normal for a response – we are currently processing a huge volume of requests. For advice from the Government on anything relating to COVID-19, please visit gov.uk/coronavirus

  • Is the Young Company still running?
  • Yes! If you sign up to be part of our YOUNG COLLECTIVE you can access some of the YOUNG COMPANY activities, including an online play reading club here. You can find information on all the YOUNG COMPANY events here royalexchange.co.uk/whats-on-and-tickets/young-company-collective-workshops

  • Is the Children’s Company still running?
  • We are still running PLAY every Sunday for 5 –10 year olds. In this 40-minute digital weekly drop in session, your child will be exploring drama with professional theatre-makers and getting involved in different games and activities each week.  Running from 11:00am – 11:40 am. It’s a great opportunity for your child to interact, learn and play!  Session will take place on ZOOM video call platform – please book your place here royalexchange.co.uk/whats-on-and-tickets/play-spring-summer-2020

  • Are ELDERS MONDAYS still taking place?
  • We recognise it’s really important for people to stay connected, continue the things they enjoy and remain creative so we are pleased to announce that we will be hosting Elders Mondays sessions online. You can find out more information here royalexchange.co.uk/whats-on-and-tickets/elders-mondays-spring-summer-2020

  • I’m a freelance artist – are you able to advise me?
  • If you are a freelance artist or small organisation please visit the Greater Manchester Artist Hub gm-artisthub.co.uk where we have joined forces with other Manchester arts organisations to help you talk through creative ideas, get advice on issues that are causing you concern, or simply to develop your network and stay connected during isolation.

  • How can I help?
  • Like organisations across the country when we closed we had to work very quickly to stabilise our business and to support our staff. We thank you for your patience and for bearing with us as we work through what happens next.

    The immediate and most significant impact of closure was that income generated through ticket sales was immediately lost. This was our single highest source of income for the theatre and the work we make (we are a charity), generating around £4.5m a year. 

    We are asking for your support now more than ever.  We would love you to stay on this journey with us and help to secure the future of Manchester’s iconic theatre. To support the Royal Exchange Theatre you can…

    Become a Member royalexchange.co.uk/become-a-member

    Make a Donation bookings.royalexchange.co.uk/donate

    We know this is a big ask and we cannot thank you enough for your support.

We will continue to create, make, dream, innovate and entertain. We will bridge gaps, write new stories and share our experiences. Most of all we will bring people together to do this – because we cannot do this alone. We cannot do this without you - our incredible audiences.

Stay safe and we will see you soon.

Thank you,
Bryony Shanahan, Roy Alexander Weise & Steve Freeman
Artistic Directors and Executive Director